May 31, 2008

Another anti-Israel politico assumes leadership role with Barack Obama!

Washington, D.C. (May 30, 2008) - The Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC) today
responded to the announcement that former Michigan Congressman David Bonior) will be representing the Obama campaign at the Democratic National Committee meeting this weekend in Washington, D.C.

As a Congressman, David Bonior was known for his strong opposition to pro-Israel policies, being called by some "the biggest supporter of the anti-Israel Arab lobby in Congress." The RJC cited Bonior as the latest in a string of advisors and campaign officials to Barack Obama that harbor anti-Israel views.

“ Barack Obama's path to strengthening ties with the Jewish community is severely blocked when appointing an anti-Israel figure like David Bonior. While in Congress, Bonior refused to stand by Israel after repeated terrorist attacks, was known as a stalwart opponent to Israel, and is now a representative for Barack Obama.

During his Congressional career, David Bonior repeatedly opposed pro-Israel legislation. In 1997, David Bonior was one of 15 Congressmen who signed a letter asking then-President Clinton to pressure Israelis into making concessions to the Palestinians. In 2002, David Bonior was one of only 21 Congressmen who opposed H.R. 392, which publicly affirmed Congress's support of Israel's right to self-defense and called for the dismantling of the Palestinian terrorist infrastructure. In 1990, David Bonior was one of only 34 Congressman to vote against a measure naming Jerusalem as the united capital of Israel. In 1989, Bonior was one of six House members to vote against a bill that prevented US funds from going to UN entities that granted the PLO membership. Throughout his career, Bonior repeatedly opposed US aid to Israel and supported arms sales to Arab states opposed to Israel's existence.

“ The appointment of yet another anti-Israel advisor like David Bonior to represent Barack Obama speaks volumes to the Jewish community. The pattern including Tony McPeak, Zbigniew Brzezinski, and Robert Malley continues with this appointment. It's no wonder the Jewish community remains deeply keptical and troubled by Barack Obama."

PS By the way, Bonior was, as you probably know, campaign manager for personal injury lawyer, presidential candidate, John Edwards. Maybe it was a package deal whereby Edwards came out for Obama if he took Bonior on as a major advisor? jsk

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May 29, 2008

What exactly is UNRWA – United Nations Relief Works Agency?

A Barrier to Peace

By Jonathan Spyer
Perspectives Papers No. 44, May 27, 2008

Executive Summary: The United Nations Relief Works Agency (UNRWA) was created under the jurisdiction of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), with the unique responsibility of solely aiding the Palestinian Arabs. Due to this special status, the UNRWA perpetuates, rather than resolves, the Palestinian refugee issue, and therefore serves as a major obstacle toward resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Like no other UN body, UNRWA’s definition of refugees includes not only the refugees themselves, but also their descendents. Moreover, refugees keep their status even if they have gained citizenship. UNRWA employs teachers affiliated with Hamas and allows the dissemination of Hamas messages in its schools. The Hamas coup in Gaza of July 2007 has resulted in a Hamas takeover of UNRWA facilities there. Therefore, UNRWA's activities require urgent action. The Agency should be dissolved and its services transferred to more appropriate administering organizations.


Millions of refugees worldwide - over 130 million since the end of World War II - have come under the responsibility of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), which aims to resettle and rehabilitate refugees. On
December 8, 1949, the United Nations General Assembly passed Resolution 302, establishing an agency dedicated solely to "direct relief and works
programs" for the Palestinian Arab refugees - UNRWA (United Nations Relief Works Agency) - making it a unique body.

UNRWA exists in order to perpetuate, rather than to resolve, the Palestinian refugee issue. No Palestinian has ever lost his or her refugee status. There are hundreds of thousands of Palestinian refugees and their descendants, who are citizens of Jordan, for example. Yet, as far as UNRWA is concerned they are still refugees, eligible for aid. UNRWA, over the past 60 years, has transformed itself into a central vehicle for the perpetuation of the refugee problem, and into a major obstacle for the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

The Problem of Definition of the word, Refugee.

When UNRWA first began counting refugees in 1948, it did so in a way without precedent - seeking to maximize the number of those defined as refugees. UNRWA counts every descendant of the original refugees as a refugee themselves - leading to an increase of 400 percent in the number since 1948. This was a politically motivated definition. Its implication was that either Palestinians would remain refugees forever or until the day that they returned in a triumph to a Palestinian Arab state that consisted of all Israel.

If they built lives elsewhere, even after many generations, decades or centuries - they remained officially refugees. In contrast to other situations around the world, other refugees only retained that status until they found permanent homes elsewhere, presumably as citizens of other countries.

Moreover, refugee status was based solely on the applicant's word. Even
UNRWA admitted its figures were inflated in a 1998 Report of the
Commissioner General of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for
Palestine Refugees in the Near East (July 1997-30 June 1998). "UNRWA
registration figures are based on information voluntarily supplied by
refugees, primarily for the purpose of obtaining access to Agency services
and hence cannot be considered statistically valid demographic data."

Fostering Conflict

In October 2004, then UNRWA Commissioner General Peter Hansen publicly admitted for the first time that Hamas members were on the UNWRA payroll, adding, "I don't see that as a crime. Hamas as a political organization does not mean that every member is a militant and we do not do political vetting and exclude people from one persuasion as against another." Consequently, taxpayers' money in countries where Hamas was legally defined as a terrorist organization, like the United States and Canada, was being illegally used to fund Hamas-controlled activities.

Hanson's view that Hamas was a normal political organization whose doctrines did not interfere with the governance and education of Palestinians remains the position of UNRWA. This has been so even when Hamas has committed violence against other Palestinians. After the organization seized Gaza by force in July 2007, UNRWA immediately indicated to Hamas that it was eager to get back to providing its services. Nothing was changed in its procedure or performance after the takeover.

A graphic demonstration of this issue was the death of Awad al-Qiq in May
2008. Qiq had a long career as a science teacher in an UNRWA school and had been promoted to run its Rafah Prep Boys School. He was also the leading bomb maker for Islamic Jihad. He was killed while supervising a factory to make rockets and other weapons for use against Israel, located a short distance from the school. Qiq was thus simultaneously building weapons for attacking Israeli civilians while indoctrinating his students to do the same. Islamic Jihad did not need to pay him a salary for his terrorist
activities. The UN and the American taxpayer were already doing so.

The increasing numbers of UNRWA teachers who openly identify with radical groups have created a teachers' bloc that ensures the election of members of Hamas and individuals committed to Islamist ideologies. Using classrooms as a place to spread their radical messages, these teachers have also gravitated to local Palestinian elections. Thus, UNRWA's education system has become a springboard for the political activities of Hamas.

For example, Minister of Interior and Civil Affairs Minister Saeed Siyam of Hamas, was a teacher in UNRWA schools in Gaza from 1980 to 2003. He then became a member of UNRWA's Arab Employees Union, and has headed the Teachers Sector Committee. Other notable Hamas graduates of the UNRWA education system include Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh and Abd al-Aziz Rantisi, the former Hamas chief.

UNRWA's budget has been supported by many countries of which the United States and Western countries have been the largest contributors. In 1990, UNRWA's annual budget was over $292 million, and by 2000, it had increased to $365 million. Despite this seemingly significant rise, however, actual allocations among the various refugee camps has decreased compounded by a very high birth rate and burgeoning camp populations. Refugees were discouraged from moving out and had the incentive of being on welfare if they remained.

Per capita spending among refugees in camps thus, declined from $200 in
services per year per refugee in the 1970s, to about $70 currently. This
situation has been most evident in Lebanon, where the government provides
little if any additional assistance to the Palestinians.

UNRWA provides jobs to a large number of Palestinians (it has a full time
staff of 23,000, 90% or more of whom are Palestinian Arabs).
While the UN High Commission on Refugees (UNHCR) and the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) avoid employing locals who are also recipients of agency services, UNRWA does not make this distinction. UNRWA thus keeps a large population of refugees and their descendants in a permanent state of welfare dependency, financed by the western taxpayer. In so doing, it acts as a barrier to attempts to make the refugees into productive citizens. Bureaucracies have a tendency to become self-perpetuating. In the case of UNRWA, this tendency is exacerbated by the fact that the organization's raison d'etre is the preserving of a refugee problem, rather than finding a solution for it.

Conclusion: The UN erred when it created a UN body devoted exclusively to one refugee population and with a modus operandi contradicting that of all other relief institutions. Four steps are required to bring the international approach to the Palestinian refugee issue in line with standard practice on similar situations.

First, UNRWA itself should be dissolved. Second, the services UNRWA
currently provides should be transferred to other UN agencies, notably the
UNHCR, which have a long experience with such programs. Third,
responsibility for normal social services should be turned over to the
Palestinian Authority. A large portion of the UNRWA staff should be
transferred to that governmental authority. Fourth, donors should use the
maximum amount of oversight to ensure transparency and accountability.

Jonathan Spyer is a Senior Research Fellow at the Global Research in
International Affairs Center, IDC, Herzliya.
IMRA - Independent Media Review and Analysis

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 08:53 PM | Comments (0)

May 28, 2008

Rarely do we promote an organization but MEMRI has a unique function

It constantly monitors and reports what is actually being said in the Arab and Islamic world

Founded in February 1998, The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) aims to “Bridge the Language Gap Between the Middle East and the West.” Headquartered in Washington, D.C., MEMRI now has branches in Baghdad, Jerusalem and Tokyo, with a staff of more than 70 working around the globe. As a nonpartisan, nonprofit, 501 (c) 3 organization, MEMRI strives to provide a previously non-existent window into the Arab and Muslim world through the region’s media, educational systems, and religious institutions by monitoring, translating, analyzing, and disseminating a wide array of primary sources.

Timely translations and analysis in English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, and Japanese are provided free of charge by e-mail, fax, and via its websites, and MEMRI has become a vital, worldwide, 24-hour operation providing an essential service for the media, legislative bodies, government agencies, policy makers, academia and the public at large.

Headquartered in the heart of Washington, D.C., its research is used as a vital resource for all major government agencies. MEMRI is frequently used, on Capitol Hill for updating members of the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate and their staffs. Four times a year or more, MEMRI holds events sponsored by bi-partisan Congressional offices on issues relevant to the Middle East. MEMRI material is cited in Congressional legislation and comments on the floors of the Senate and House, as well as in testimony given by MEMRI staffers before Congressional committees. MEMRI’s work is also extensively covered by the leading news sources in Washington, D.C. MEMRI has been recommended by some of the most sophisticated and well informed political pundits in the country. Below are some of their quotes:

I really appreciate the work that MEMRI contributes to understanding the complexities of the region. My sub-committee relies on MEMRI’s bulletins, books and alerts. We use them for hearing and briefing preparations as well as gaining a more in-depth view of events.”
— Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chair of the Middle East
Subcommittee, International Relations

I have found MEMRI invaluable in identifying what is being said on Arab and Iranian TV.
— Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA), Head of Senate Republican Conference

“MEMRI is providing an invaluable window into the kind of slickly produced yet hate-filled programming that fuels violence and terrorism throughout the Middle East, Africa, Asia, Europe, and here in America.”
- Rep. Steve Rothman (D-NJ), House Committee on Appropriations

“MEMRI does an outstanding job of reviewing the Arab language press. Knowing what is being said about America is critical to understanding the Middle East. Holding Arab leaders accountable for failure to refute outrageous lies about America and Israel is an important part of our public diplomacy efforts and ultimately our Middle East policy.” — Rep. Brad Sherman (D- CA), Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on International Terrorism and Nonproliferation

Washington Post columnist Charles Krauthammer stated, “For anyone interested in what is really happening in the Middle East, MEM RI is utterly indispensable. It should be read daily by scholars, journalists and policymakers with any interest in this part of the world.”

A Washington Times front page story on MEMRI reported, “From its nine-room office, which looks more like the corporate headquarters of a small Saudi oil company, MEMRI distributes, via e-mail and fax, translations of comments about America in mainstream Arabic-language newspapers and in speeches by Muslim leaders. U.S. officials say the translated texts sometimes are unnerving... Ninety-nine U.S. senator cited MEMRI translations in an April 25 letter to Bush.”

The fine work of MEMRI is financed exclusively through individual contributions and needs your help. Below is a form to complete and send in along with your donation to this essential public relations organization.

Please donate by Mail and check appropriate box below.

P.O. BOX 27837, WASHINGTON D.C. 20038-7837
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May 25, 2008

Aharon Barak - Misguided, Judicial Despot

By Prof. Paul Eidelberg

Jewish Press, April 18, 2008

If you see a generation which is constantly on the decline, go and investigate the Judges of Israel.
(Babylonian Talmud (Shabbat 139a)

At the recent Herzliya Conference, former Supreme Court president Aharon Barak warned or threatened the audience about attempts to introduce changes in the method of appointing judges of the Court - which critics have called a self-appointed oligarchy. Hence, this essay

Former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, John Bolton, a brilliant lawyer, regards Judge Robert Bork as one of the finest legal minds in the United States. Judge Bork has said that Israel’s Supreme Court is the worst in the world - and he said this while Aharon Barak was Israel’s Supreme Court president.

In fact, eminent citizens of Israel across the political spectrum have been very critical of the Court especially under Barak. Here are the names of some of the critics:

· The late Chaim Herzog; former president of Israel;
· Former Supreme Court president Moshe Landau;
· Former deputy president of the Court Professor Menachem Elon;
· Former Supreme Court Justice Yaakov Maltz;
· Former Supreme Court justice Zvi Tal;
· Hebrew University political scientist professor Shiomo Avineri;
· Attorney Yisrael Kiuf, a member of the Israel Bar Association Central Committee;
· Hebrew University Professor of Law, Ruth Gavison.

Most outrageous is Barak’s dictum, “everything is justifiable.” This dictum violates a basic principle of constitutional democracy - separation of powers. The judicial arrogance implicit in the dictum makes nonsense of the rule of any stable law. It endows the Court with the power to dictate the moral values of society. Barak’s power-seeking dictum is a formula for judicial despotism — and this exactly describes his many flagrant rulings which trample on the heritage of the Jewish people. This is not all.

The influence of Barak’s alteration of government policies endangers Israel’s survival. Not only did Barak substitute his personal predilections for the laws of the Legislative branch of government; he also substituted his personal sentiments for the decisions of the Executive branch directly and immediately responsible for the security of the Nation.

Barak often made decisions, oblivious of the fact that Israel is at war with an implacable foe. Many of his decisions ignore reality, that the Palestinians, whether called terrorists or “civilians,” are committed to Israel’s annihilation.

Untrained in military or security affairs, Barak substituted his personal opinions for the professional judgment of the Israel Defense Forces on the routing of the security fence. Untrained in military or security affairs, Barak vetoed IDF decisions to demolish buildings used by Arab terrorists to kill Jews.
Judicial imperialism is a menace to the nation, and it is time to remove one’s velvet gloves when speaking of this issue.

I will cite two cases mentioned in an editorial of The Jerusalem Post dated January 27, 2008. The first involves the present Supreme Court headed by Dorit Beinish, Judge Barak’s successor and disciple.

“Border policeman Rami Zoari, 20, was murdered [On January 24J and the police woman on duty with him was seriously wounded in a shooting at a roadblock that was being manned late at night, contrary to their commander’s best judgment... The only reason why they were there at night, according to the Israel Police inspector Gen. David Cohen and Jerusalem head commander Aharon Franco, was a High Court ruling that the police had no option but to obey.

“The roadblock in question is the smaller and more vulnerable of two checkpoints into Shuafat in northern Jerusalem, and is earmarked for pedestrians only. It handles less traffic than its larger neighbor 200 meters away, whose guards are protected by concrete barriers and narrow approach tracks, which make passage possible only in a single file. Without such roadblocks, assailants — such as those who perpetrated the attacks —would be free to enter Jerusalem and beyond.”

The editorial continues: “The police had wanted to channel all movement after sundown to the larger crossing. But the Supreme Court ordered the smaller access route between Shuafat and Givat Ze’ev [to be] open 24 hours a day, out of concern for the quality of life of Shuafat’s Arab residents. If it were up to me, Commander Franco declared, “this crossing would have remained closed, but the Supreme Court imposed its will.”

Professor Eidelberg is the founder and president of the Foundation for Constitutional Democracy, a Jerusalem-based think tank for improving Israel’s system of governance.

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 06:11 PM | Comments (0)

May 23, 2008

Who (Really) Speaks for Islam?

Redacted from a book review by ROBERT SATLOFF

The Weekly Standard, May 12, 2008

Who Speaks for Islam is written by John L. Esposito, founding director of Georgetown University’s Prince Aiwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim -Christian Understanding, and Dalia Mogahed, executive director of the Gallup Center for Muslim Studies. As the authors state at the outset, the book’s goal is to “democratize the debate” about a potential clash between Western and Muslim civilizations by shedding light on the “actual views of everyday Muslims”—especially the “silenced majority” whose views Esposito and Mogahed argue are lost in the din about terrorism, extremism, and Islamofascism.

This majority, they contend, are just like us. They pray like Americans, dream of professional advancement like Americans, delight in technology like Americans, celebrate democracy, like Americans and cherish the ideal of women’s equality like Americans. In fact, the authors write, “everyday Muslims” are so similar to ordinary Americans that “conflict between the Muslim and Western communities is far from inevitable.”

Similar arguments have been made before; some of this is true; some is rubbish; much is irrelevant. The real debate about the “clash of civilizations” is about whether a determined element of radical Muslims could, like the Bolsheviks, take control of their societies and lead them into conflict with the West. The question often revolves around a disputed data point: Of the world’s 1.3 billion Muslims, how many are radicals? If the number is relatively small, then the fear of a clash is inflated; if the number is relatively large, then the nightmare might not be so outlandish after all.

What gives Who Speaks for Islam its aura of credibility is that its answers are allegedly based on hard data, not taxi-driver anecdotes from a quick visit to Cairo. The book draws on a mammoth, six-year effort to poll and interview tens of thousands of Muslims in more than 35 countries with Muslim majorities or substantial minorities. The polling sample, Esposito and Mogahed claim, represents “more than 90 percent of the world’s 1.3 billion Muslims.” To back up the claim, the book bears the name of the gold-standard of American polling firms, Gallup.

The answer to their poll’s self-determined, all important question as to the percentage of Muslims who told pollsters that the attacks of September 11, 2001, were “completely” justified and who said they view the United States unfavorably was seven percent. That is the double-barreled litmus test devised by Esposito and Mogahed to determine who is radical and who isn’t.

The authors don’t actually call even these people “radicals,” however; the term they use is “politically radicalized,” which implies that someone else is responsible for turning these otherwise ordinary Muslims into bin Laden sympathizers. By contrast, Muslims who said the 9/11 attacks were “not justified,” they term “moderates.”

More than half the book is an effort to distinguish the 7 percent of extremist Muslims from the “9 out of 10,” as they say, who are moderates and then to focus our collective efforts on reaching out to the fringe element. With remarkable exactitude, they argue: “If the 7 percent (91 million) of the politically radicalized continue to feel politically dominated, occupied and disrespected, the West will have little, if any, chance of changing their minds.” There is no need to worry about the 93 percent because, as Esposito and Mogahe have already argued, they are just like us.

There is much here to criticize. The not-so-hidden purpose of this book is to blur any difference between average Muslims around the world and average Americans, and the authors rise to the occasion at every turn. Take the very definition of “Islam.” From Karen Armstrong to Bernard Lewis and that’s a broad range, virtually every scholar of note (and many who aren’t) has translated the term “Islam” as “submission to God.” However, “submission” evidently sounds off-putting to the American ear. Therefore, Esposito and Mogahed offer a different, more melodious translation preferring, “a strong commitment to God”—that has a ring to it of everything but accuracy.

Or, take the authors’ cavalier attitude to the word 'many'. How many is many? At the very least, one might expect a book based on polling data to be filled with numbers. This one isn’t. Instead, page after page of Who Speaks for Islam contains such useless and un-sourced references as “many respondents cite” this or “many Muslims see” that.

Or, take the authors’ apparent indifference to facts. Twice, for example, they cite as convincing evidence for their argument poll data from “the ten most populous majority Muslim countries,” which they then list as including Jordan and Lebanon, tiny states that don’t even rank in the top 25 of Muslim majority countries. Twice they say their 10 specially polled countries collectively comprise 80 percent of the world Muslim population; in fact, the figure is barely 60 percent.

These problems would not matter much if the book gave readers the opportunity to review the poll data on which Esposito and Mogahed base their judgments. Alas, that is not the case. Neither the text nor the appendix includes the full data to a single question from any survey taken by Gallup over the entire six-year period of its World Poll initiative. We, the readers, either have to pay more than $20,000 to Gallup to gain access to its proprietary research or have to rely on the good faith of the authors. Or, more accurately, we have to rely on Gallup’s good name—the integrity, trust and independence” cited above.

As to the precision of the data classifications and how the information was compiled and classified, therein lies the smoking gun. Mogahed publicly admitted they knew certain people weren’t moderates but they still termed them so. She and Esposito cooked the books and dumbed down the text. Apparently, by the authors’ own test, there are not 91 million radicals in Muslim societies but almost twice that number.

They must have shrieked in horror to find their original estimate on the high side of assessments made by scholars, such as Daniel Pipes, whom Esposito routinely denounces as Islamophobes. To paraphrase Mogahed, maybe it wasn’t the most technically accurate way of doing this, but their neat solution seems to have been to redefine 78 million people off the rolls of radicals.

The cover-up is even worse. The fill data from the 9/11 question show that, in addition to the 13.5 percent, there is another 23.1 percent of respondents_...300 million Muslims—who told pollsters the attacks were in some way justified. Esposito and Mogahed don’t utter a word about the vast sea of intolerance in which the radicals operate.

Then there is the more fundamental fraud of using the 9/l1 question as the measure of “who is a radical.” Amazing as it sounds, according to Esposito and Mogahed, the proper term for a Muslim who hates America, wants to impose Sharia law, supports suicide bombing, and opposes equal rights for women but does not “completely” justify 9/11 is “moderate.”

Could the smart people at Gallup really believe this? Regardless, they should immediately release all the data associated with their world poll and open all the flies and archives of their Center for Muslim Studies to independent inspection. With a dose of transparency and a dollop of humility, the data just might teach something useful to the world’s six billion citizens.

Robert Satloff is the executive director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 05:30 PM | Comments (0)

May 21, 2008

With Friends like Hillel Halkin, who needs Ahmaddinijad?

By Jerome S. Kaufman

It was with some astonishment that I read an article from the NY Sun, May 20, 2008. It was entitled, “Unprepared for Bush’s Praise.” Then I noticed the name of the author, Hillel Halkin, and everything fell into place.

In the article, Halkin complained bitterly about President Bush’s speech before the Israeli Knesset May 15, 2008. What did Halkin find so objectionable in the speech? President Bush had reminded Halkin of his Jewish origins and their biblical history.

He had the temerity to describe his own Christian feelings as they related to the establishment of the Jewish State. He referred to it “as the redemption of an ancient promise, given to Abraham and Moses and David, of a homeland for the Chosen people in Eretz Yisrael.” How embarrassing for a proud born again secularist like Halkin! How dare Bush refer to Jews as the “chosen people” in this age of political correctness where everyone is the exactly the same! How dare Bush use the Hebrew term, Eretz Yisrael (land of Israel) instead of calling it Palestine, so as not to irritate the Arabs with the true historical and political origins of the land.

In addition, how embarrassing to Halkin that an Evangelical Christian “with all kinds of their absurd beliefs,” would support Israel! Halkin’s concluding paragraph. “Jews (like him) are relieved to see President Bush leave office next January. It is not just his opposition to stem-cell research (a primary issue for secular Jews far exceeding any affiliation with the State of Israel) and the war in Iraq. The man thinks too much of us. That is something we’re not prepared to put up with.

(Especially since our very Jewishness is itself, a source of great embarrassment we would prefer disappear into the woodwork.)

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 08:20 PM | Comments (0)

May 19, 2008

President Bush at World Economic Forum

Sharm el Sheikh, Egypt, May 18, 2008

President Bush:

"I strongly support a two-state solution -- a democratic Palestine based on law and justice that will live with peace and security alongside a democrat Israel."

Dr. Aaron Lerner:

"And I support inter-continental transportation based on flying on the backs of elephants who flap their ears. But, just as Dumbo only flies in the movies, the chances of a "democratic Palestine based on law and justice that will live with peace and security alongside a democrat Israel" is a fiction”

Dr. Aaron Lerner - IMRA: Independent Media Review Analysis

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 10:23 PM | Comments (0)

May 18, 2008

And, will the real Obama step forward?

By Joseph Farah

2008 Inc.

DOES Barack Obama live in a parallel universe? I have a feeling he must actually be from another planet — where up is down, left is right, black is white and right is wrong. How else can one explain his extraordinary response in the Feb. 26 Cleveland debate to the question of which Senate vote he would like to take back?

In his four years as a freshman senator from Illinois, Obama has already cast hundreds of votes. He has also failed to cast dozens and dozens of votes on some of the most important and controversial legislation debated in the upper house as he campaigned across the country in his bid for the presidency. (He has missed 40 percent of Senate votes in the current session.)

But, let’s examine some of Obama’s key votes:

• On May 24, 2007, he voted against continued funding of our troops in Iraq. He was one of only 14 negative votes; meaning most of his Democratic colleagues opposed him.

• Jan. 11, 2007, he voted against reform on earmarks, the basis 7 of pork-barrel spending — again contradicting the majority of his fellow Democrats.

• On June 22, 2006, he voted against procurement of F-22A fighter aircraft and F- 119 engines — again contradicting the majority of his fellow Democrats.

• On May 17, 2006, he voted against an increase in the amount of fencing and vehicle barriers along the southwest border of the U.S. — again contradicting the majority of his fellow Democrats.

• On Sept. 29, 2005, he opposed the confirmation of Supreme Court Justice John Roberts.

• On Aug. 3, 2007, he voted against expanding the power of U.S. intelligence agencies to eavesdrop on foreign terror suspects.

• On April 26, 2007, he voted to set dates for withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq.

• On March 29, 2007, he voted to start withdrawing troops from Iraq last summer.

• On July 18, 2006, he voted to allow federal funding for experimentation on embryonic stem cells.

• On June 6, 2006, he opposed a cloture motion on a same-sex marriage amendment that effectively killed it.

• On May 25, 2006, he voted for a “comprehensive immigration reform” bill that would have provided amnesty to millions of illegal aliens.

• On May 11, 2006, he voted against extending President Bush’s tax cuts.

• On Jan. 31, 2006, he opposed confirmation of Supreme Court Justice Samuel Auto.

I could go on and on. He has cast dozens and dozens of votes to spend taxpayer money on extra-constitutional programs. The National Journal characterized him as the most liberal senator in 2007. He’s been out there — on the fringe — casting tough votes, controversial votes, extreme votes.
Moreover, that’s why I thought his answer to that question at the Cleveland debate was so amazing, so unbelievable, so shocking.

‘What is the single, solitary, lone vote Barack Obama regrets having cast in his years in the Senate? Here’s what he said:

“When I first arrived in the Senate that first year, we had a situation surrounding Tern Schiavo. And, I remember how we adjourned with a unanimous agreement that eventually allowed Congress to interject itself into that decision-making process of the families. It wasn’t something I was comfortable with, but it was not something that I stood on the floor and stopped. And I think that was a mistake, and I think the American people understood that that was a mistake. And as a constitutional law professor, I knew better. ... And I think that’s an example of inaction, and sometimes that can be as costly as action.”

That “situation” surrounding Tern Schiavo was, I like to think, an earnest effort by a group of lawmakers to save the life of an innocent woman who was eventually put to death by court order — starved and dehydrated against the wishes of her mother, father and siblings, who wished to care for her at their own expense.

That is Barack Obama’s deepest legislative regret — his biggest mistake. He tried to save the life of a poor, handicapped woman who was being victimized in the most inhuman way by her estranged husband and a rogue local court. This should give you some insight into the character of Barack Obama. It should give you a glimpse of his dark soul. It should give you a look into his hardened, politically correct heart. It should give you a picture of what this country has in store for it if he is elected president later this year!

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 07:03 AM | Comments (0)

May 15, 2008

American Collusion in the fall of Lebanon, Israel, Western Europe


By Emanuel A. Winston, Mid East Commentator & Analyst

May 2008

Once again, Lebanon is crossing the threshold into Civil War as in the 17 years from 1975 to 1993 where Yassir Arafat and his Muslim PLO attacked Christian and Muslim Lebanese in his efforts to establish a mini PLO State in Lebanon after being expelled from Jordan in Black September 1970.

Now the Shi’ite Hezb’Allah, under the guidance of Hassan Nasrallah in collusion with Syria has taken over part of Beirut. Hebz’Allah would not have been able to start this Civil War had Israel soundly beaten them when Hebz’Allah began launching 4,000 Katyusha Missiles into Northern Israel. We know it was the total incompetence of Israel’s Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Minister of Defense Amir Peretz and Chief of Staff Dan Halutz, who failed so miserably.

Why were such bumbling incompetents even in a position to subvert their own superior IDF (Israel Defense Forces)? The answer to that back tracks through Ariel Sharon, back through Ehud Barak and all the way back to Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres. Each of them, in his own time, was under the direct and extraordinary influence of Arabists in the State Department, oil men - like former President George Herbert Walker Bush and James Baker III, themselves in linkage to the Saudis and other Arab and Muslim oil nations.

The Israelis named above had been on a short leash to Arabists at "Foggy Bottom" the U.S. State Department in Washington. America was Israel’s primary supplier of almost everything after Israel’s withdrawal from Sinai in 1979 (including the Sinai oil fields Israel had developed with which she would have been energy self-sufficient). Now Israel depends on America for aviation fuel, weapons’ systems, spare parts and more. Obedience was expected lest pressure were applied by cut-offs in the above. One primary order was to restrain the IDF from attacking Palestinians Terrorists. Saudi Arabia and other Arab Muslim oil states with which the U.S. was doing big business expected the U.S. to give Israel her marching orders.

As a result, the keen edge of Israel’s military capability was slowly eroded. One serious example was during Sharon’s term of office where, for 5 years, he watched and allowed Hezb’Allah to build fortifications in Southern Lebanon, including bunkers loaded with Katyusha missile launchers and thousands of missiles supplied by Syria and Iran. The great General failed his people and became another puppet on a string. As a seasoned general, he chose to do nothing and permitted the Hezb’Allah (Iran’s proxy in Lebanon) to grow stronger.

So, what did the U.S. Arabists gain by dumbing down the Israeli Army and its ability to pre-emptively strike her enemies? Today’s American Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, being advised by the "shadowy" James Baker and father Bush, must be dumbfounded as Hezb’Allah, along with Amal, have just captured part of Beirut - the former Switzerland of the Middle East. Syria’s President Bashar Assad is chortling in delight.

Wiser minds in America such as General Alexander Haig and General George Keegan, former head of America’s Air Force Intelligence have said Israel is America’s unsinkable aircraft carrier in the Middle East and worth 5 CIAs. But, the Arabists in Washington have managed to shoot holes in Israel’s hull and that ship is listing badly. The same pathetic, incompetent dimwits are re-elected again and again. They have not a clue as to how to defend the Jewish nation and have no problem giving away the sovereignty of the nation for whatever bribes are offered.

In the meantime, the U.S. had a reliable army in the forces of Israel which they compromised to appease Arab Muslim allies" who declare their hate for America - verbally and often. Rice pressed Sharon and Olmert to give up the bountiful 21 Jewish communities in Gush Katif/Gaza as a gesture of appeasement to Mahmoud Abbas, President of the Palestinian Authority, so Bush and Rice could leave office with the legacy of having given birth to the so-called Two-State Solution.

Within hours of Israel’s total evacuation of 10,000 Jewish men, women and children and the destruction of their homes, gardens, farms, businesses, schools, synagogues and cemetery, the Muslim Arab Palestinians swarmed over the former Jewish developed Land, to loot and destroy - even the innovative greenhouses left for them to run.

The Terrorists quickly established their claims and shortly after (as forecast by this writer and many other) Gaza became an operational firing base. By this time Olmert was Prime Minister and both for his Leftist ideology and orders from Rice, Israel’s military was to "restrain" herself even as the Kassam Rockets ramped up their bombardments onto Sderot, Ashkelon and the other small kibbutzim and communities of Southern Israel. No matter who was killed, Olmert held back the IDF from a full scale attack to insure that the rocket fire would be stopped. Naturally, the Arabist U.S. State Department led by Rice; bitterly castigated Israel for any action she took to protect her citizens, saying such action was "disproportionate.”

That word has flowed from the mouths of Europeans, the United Nations, the Arab League, ‘et al’. Nothing Israel did to defend herself was acceptable. Israel was stripped of her sovereignty, so that civilian and soldiers’ deaths and maiming were to be accepted or face the wrath of Rice, accompanied by U.S. threats to cut of spare parts, stop transfer of technology, slow down shipments of aviation fuel, cancel pending contracts back by the full power of President George W. Bush. The U.S. has dissipated the one reliable ally, capable of fighting, gathering intelligence and providing substantial improvements on U.S. electronics, missiles, aircraft, tanks, etc.

None of this made any difference to Rice, the Arabist Ste Department, Baker and his hostile group or the multi-national oil companies. Israel was to be harmed, truncated in size, made vulnerable to the Arab Muslim States and the Muslim Arab Palestinian Terrorists. Any voice of support was only for political purposed because the American people and most of Congress supported Israel and little fondness for the Muslim Jihadists. Washington had to be careful, especially during an election year. To hear Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton speak out so strongly in support of Israel is troubling - given their past. (That’s a story best told later and separately.)

The real story is the "Shadow Government" that haunts Washington and is the real power to broker deals outside the purview of Congress. I suppose the first to question under subpoena would be James Baker, Dick Cheney, George Herbert Walker Bush, Brent Scowcroft, C. Rice and a host of highly placed individuals in the State Department.

The Government of the U.S. is only marginally in control - although we, the people, believe the President and Congress are making foreign policy. So Mr. Bush, Ms. Rice - now that Lebanon is going into the hands of Hezb’Allah and Syria, how do you feel about the Bush Legacy? GW Bush and C. Rice subverted the only ally, Israel, successfully fighting the Arab Muslim Terrorists. Yes indeed, Ms. Rice, you and Mr. Bush will indeed be remembered but more like Neville Chamberlain.

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 09:06 PM | Comments (0)

May 13, 2008

Not all Hollywood Hates Us - Welcome Midnight Cowboy!

Joe Buck for Prime Minister of Israel!

Ynet news reports that Hollywood actor Jon Voight will be visiting Sderot children. We are so used to the air in between the ears of so many Hollywood actors spouting off their "ideas" about politics that we forget that it is actually possible for an actor to be sensitive and intelligent, and Voight is clearly just such!

With the leftist scum calling for total boycotts of Israel, with pressures on Nadine Gordimer and other cultural figures or intellectuals who visit Israel, Voight's visit is a great moral act and his decision to spend some time in Sderot even greater. Sderot has become Israel's Guernica thanks to the Olmert (and Sharon) government decision to ethnically cleanse the Gaza Strip of its Jews and convert it into a large rocket base.

From YNET: “I’m coming to salute, encourage and strengthen the people of Israel on this joyous 60th birthday,” said Voight. Incidentally, Voight's role in The Odessa File led to the capture and suicide of the film's real-life Nazi villain. Let's have Joe Buck teach Israel's cowardly politicians how to handle terrorist butt Texas style!

Meanwhile, I think Voight's visit can be of value for other reasons as well. Voight as Joe Buck might light a Texas fire under the butts of certain politicians and generals I could name. Yuli Tamir could star as one of those aging women who hire Joe Buck in the Tel Aviv staging of "Midnight Cowboy.” In addition, Olmert is really type cast to play Ratso Rizzo. I really understand George Costanza in that episode of Seinfeld wanting to buy Voight's old used car!
As to those unnatural acts in Voight's film "Deliverance," if I get to choose on whom they get performed in the Israeli film version I am willing to play the banjo!

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 05:58 PM | Comments (0)

May 10, 2008



May 8, 2008

Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium
Washington, D.C

THE VICE PRESIDENT: Thank you very much. Mr. Ambassador, Senator Lieberman, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen: good evening to all of you. It is indeed a pleasure to join this impressive gathering as we mark the 60th Anniversary of the modern state of Israel's founding, reaffirming the warm relationship between our two countries, and to honor the memory of a man who is a hero to both Israel and America, Colonel Mickey Marcus. (Applause.)

It's also my privilege, on this happy occasion, to bring warm personal regards from the President of the United States, George W. Bush. (Applause.) I know the President would like to be here as well, but he's in Texas with the family –- and in two days we'll all congratulate him as the father of the bride. (Applause.)

Israel has never had a better friend in the White House than the 43rd President of the United States. (Applause.) Today also happens to be the birthday of the 33rd President, Harry Truman, who was living in the White House 60 years ago. As the historical record makes clear -- (applause) -- President Truman encountered a good deal of resistance inside his own administration when he showed an inclination to recognize the new Jewish state. Up until even the hours before independence was announced, no one was really sure what kind of official response America would make. But Harry Truman was not the sort to wring his hands and to leave an important matter unresolved. So at his direction, only 11 minutes after the announcement was made in Tel Aviv, the United States of America recognized the state of Israel. (Applause.)

At that moment, a special bond was formed between our two countries –- and that bond has only grown stronger and more meaningful over time. Our nations were both founded by courageous, peace-loving people –- devoted to the ideals of liberty and justice, and humble before Almighty God. The United States and Israel have persevered through many difficulties, and the tests of history have found us ready. As fellow democracies, we cherish a friendship based on shared principles, a shared commitment to the safety of our peoples, and a deep willingness to labor intensively in the cause of security and lasting peace.

Across this nation –- indeed, around the world –- this anniversary of Israel's founding is an occasion for deep admiration and respect. What started as a tiny, struggling country is still tiny –- but has seen six decades of unceasing accomplishment. The desert has bloomed, and Israel has become a nation of world-class enterprises, great universities and medical centers, technological advancement, scholarly brilliance, and cultural beauty. Holocaust survivors and refugees have been welcomed from Europe, the Arab lands, Ethiopia, the former Soviet Union –- and they have found hope and opportunity in the land of Jacob.

In these years, Israel has also given the world many towering examples of strength and statesmanship, among them David Ben Gurion, Abba Eban, Golda Meir, Menachem Begin, Yitzhak Rabin, and a man who defended Israel with every ounce of his strength -– Ariel Sharon. He is in our thoughts this evening. (Applause.)

On this anniversary, we think even farther back, to a man of vision and determination named Theodore Herzl. Herzl did not live to see the birth of Israel. Yet he died in the confident belief that good men and women would live on to fulfill his aspiration for the Jewish people, and be inspired by his own words of wisdom: "If you will it, it is no dream."

Herzl, Ben-Gurion and other early visionaries would marvel at all that Israel has become in these last 60 years. In this modern, vigorous, prospering society, they would see much that is new. Yet so much more would still be familiar –- the holy places, the splendor of the land, the reverence of its people and the firmness of character, and, always, the tireless search for peace and the blessings of a normal life.

In tribute to all that's been achieved in these 60 years, one week from today the President of the United States will be in Jerusalem, speaking to the Knesset and proudly joining the celebration. (Applause.) And a celebration is well in order –- because the founding of Israel, the survival of Israel, the success of Israel are among the greatest achievements the world has known. (Applause.) That is what brings us to this auditorium tonight in America's capital city: to mark the anniversary of a state founded within living memory, but with a history reaching back to the prophets, a friend to our own country, a light unto the nations. You've gathered in a spirit of pride and thanksgiving, and rightly so. And, I'm tremendously grateful for the honor of joining you this evening.

Thank you very much. (Applause.)

END 7:15 P.M. EDT

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 09:28 PM | Comments (0)

May 08, 2008

Interview of an American Muslim, Dr. M. Zuhdi Jasser

Redacted from an in-depth interview by Joan Harting Barham

Joan Harting Barham(JHB): In a way, you are a man of many identities: you’re a proud, native-born American, a devout Muslim, a physician, the founder of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD), a husband and father. How do you prioritize all these roles?

Jasser: Until 9/11, I always felt my challenge was treating patients, helping people who come in feeling poorly or feeling that there is no hope and giving them some hope with regard to treatments. Early in my life, I was able to mix that dedication with service to country via the Health Professions Scholarship Program. What HPSP does is pay for medical students’ tuition in exchange for military service. So, four years of medical school translates to owing four years of service as a physician. I’d always wanted to serve in the military and it allowed me to combine those dreams.

JHB: Is there a question of reconciling any of these roles?

ZJ: It’s interesting, some Muslims have asked me: Zuhdi, are you Muslim first or American first? They challenge my patriotism by asking that. The problem, I think, in the Muslim community is that most Muslims still mix government with religion; there’s still a feeling that government should be God. I feel that religion ceases to be personal and becomes coercion when government gets involved in the relationship.

JHB: You founded the American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD) in 2003, two years after 9/11. What was the impetus for creating it?

ZJ: After 9/11, local media started interviewing the Muslim on the street, the Muslim at the Arizona State University, whoever they could get. I saw interviews with two imams running the Imam Council here in Phoenix, who basically blamed America for 9/11. They also condoned the bombing of the USS Cole, saying that America deserved that for our foreign policy. So, a group of us were sitting around a dinner table, complaining, and we said: That’s enough. We need to form an organization that truly, truly understands what this ideological conflict is all about. Especially Muslims who came to the U.S. for political reasons; the silent majority of Muslim Americans who escaped theocracy and secular dictatorship as my parents did when they came from Syria.

We met in the summer of ’02 and agreed to form an organization stating where the ideological separations are; that we are loyal to our citizenship oath – which is a secular constitution we believe in – and stating that we will defend the separation of religion and state. We had other points about gender equality and about the right of any Muslim to define and interpret the Koran – that it’s not just the domain of the imams or the so-called Islamic scholars.

Then we formed our Board of Directors and put together a foundation that would take years to fully establish because the mosques and Islamist organizations such as Muslim CAIR [Council on American-Islamic Relations], ISNA [Islamic Society of North America] and MPAC [the Muslim Public Affairs Council] were not being very receptive.

JHB: Your organization, as I understand it, is predicated on the notion that modern Western democracy and Islam are completely compatible. Can you explain?

ZJ: Yes, but we have to be clear on what we mean by democracy.

Democracy as it’s being pushed by the State Department, is defined as elections and the ballot box and that, without a constitution that defends minority rights, becomes the oppression by the majority over the minority. In Muslim countries, where Islamists currently are wielding a plurality – if not a majority – they end up oppressing the rights of other faiths, of secular Muslims, of anti-Islamist Muslims, of Jews, of Christians, of Bahá'í, of atheists, of anybody who doesn’t fit the Islamist mold.

JHB: You’ve spoken and written a great deal about America’s hunger since 9/11 for moderate Muslim voices. It’s arguable that hunger remains unsatisfied. How come?

ZJ: It’s not only arguable, it’s true; that hunger hasn’t been in any way satisfied. All I can say is that organizations like ours and others that are anti-Islamist have a long way to go.

JHB: Is the audience for the AIFD website primarily Muslim or non-Muslim? And what about its membership?

ZJ: The intended audience for the American Islamic Forum for Democracy is Muslims. But our message has been increasingly accepted by non-Muslims; right now we have about 20 times the number of non-Muslim associate members as active, dues-paying Muslim members.

JHB: What’s the difference between a Muslim and an Islamist?

ZJ: A Muslim, to me, is anybody who states that their faith is Islam and that the Koran is, in their belief, the revealed word of God. Basically, Islamists are those who want the constitution of a given government to be the Koran. And when you take a book from God and you make it the constitution, the only people who can write law are clerics. That’s the problem.

JHB: From your vantage point, what are the most important things average Americans can do to contribute to national, community and personal security?

ZJ: Ultimately what terrorists seek to do is utilize the fabric of a free and open society to instill fear in individuals. Militant Islamists want nothing more than to see America’s freedoms being eroded. They’d be elated if we instituted marshal law because that would mean we’d surrendered and lost the war. One of the things I talk to groups about is the need to inoculate ourselves against over-reaction, once another terrorist incident happens.

We’ve been so fortunate that something like 32 terrorist incidents have been prevented since 9/11. It’s only a matter of time until one of those gets through. Our Homeland Security is doing as fantastic job, but we’ve been lucky. In terms of individuals, there are the programs such as “See Something, Say Something,” that every citizen should do. We need to protect our schools – some have said that the next target may be school systems – we need to protect our civilian population and engage the public. Right now, the public is not really engaged.

And, as far as our AIFD foundation is concerned, people can help us deconstruct political Islam ideologically. We should be holding Islamic organizations accountable for their ideas, asking them to identify terrorist organizations by name, finding out where they stand on women’s rights. You can go to your neighborhood mosque and ask how they run their Board of Directors, whether women have any rights on them, how they handle inter-faith relations. People can listen to sermons at their local mosques to see if they’re fraught with domestic and foreign policy versus spiritual messages.

JHB: Would a non-Muslim be allowed to go into a mosque and listen to a sermon?
ZJ: Absolutely.

JHB: Would the sermon be in English?
MZJ: Actually many of them are given in two languages. We’ve also taken newspaper reporters to the mosque to look at the literature distributed there as well as to listen to the sermons.. You may find a gold mine of anti-Islamist ideas; you also might expose some of the Wahhabist mosques that are disseminating a lot of vile anti-Semitic, anti-American propaganda.

JHB: And finally, what would you most like to see our next President accomplish in terms of the Islamist threat?
ZJ: I would like to see our next President have the courage to identify this as war against militant Islamism and not a war against terror; to create a strategy, a national strategy to defeat political Islam and identify it as a political movement.

Dr. M. Zuhdi Jasser, a former U.S. Navy lieutenant commander, is the founder and president of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy. He is a practicing specialist in internal medicine and nuclear cardiology in Phoenix, Arizona, where he lives with his wife and two children; a third child is due in May.

Joan Harting Barham is a writer and editor

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 08:36 PM | Comments (0)

May 06, 2008

Neglected Information: Israel and the Jews according to Obama's Pastor Jeremiah Wright

By Morton Klein, President Zionist Organization of America

You have heard about Jeremiah Wright, Barak Obama's pastor, and his anti-American, anti-white screeds and sermons. However, you have heard little or nothing about Rev. Wrights' outrageous, anti-Israel, anti-Jewish extremist diatribes. The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) has drawn attention to Chicago Trinity United Church's Pastor Rev. Jeremiah Wright's record of anti-Israel and anti-Jewish statements that has been somewhat forgotten in the current attention focusing on his anti-white, anti-U.S. and other extreme statements.

Rev. Wright has called for divestment from Israel; said that Israel is a "dirty word.” His church magazine has published a manifesto from the Palestinian terror group Hamas and also honored with its 2007 Lifetime Achievement Award Nation of Islam black racist and outspoken anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan. Farrakhan has said, "Judaism is a gutter religion," that "Hitler was a very great man" and that "white people are potential humans, they haven't evolved yet."

Rev. Wright's record on Israel & Jews:

 "We supported Zionism shamelessly while ignoring the Palestinians and branding anybody who spoke out against it as being anti-Semitic . . .. We care nothing about human life if the end justifies the means . . .." (Quoted in Ronald Kessler, 'Obama and the Minister,' Wall Street Journal, March 14, ‘08

 "The Israelis have illegally occupied Palestinian territories for almost 40 years now" ('A Message from our Pastor: This is Where I Come In,' The Trumpet (Trinity United Church of Christ publication), July 2005).

 "It took a divestment campaign to wake the business community up concerning the South Africa issue. Divestment has now hit the table again as a strategy to wake the business community up and to wake Americans up concerning the injustice and the racism under which the Palestinians have lived because of Zionism. The Divestment issue will hit the floor during this month's General Synod. Divesting dollars from businesses and banks that do business with Israel is the new strategy being proposed to wake the world up concerning the racism of Zionism. That Divestment issue won't make the press either, however." ('A Message from our Pastor: This is Where I Come In,' The Trumpet (Trinity United Church of Christ publication), July 2005).

 "… last year's conference in Africa on racism, which the United States would not participate in because somebody dared to point out the racism which still supports both here and in Israel. I said that dirty word again. Every time you say Israel, Negroes get awfully quiet on you, 'because they're scared, don't be scared. You don't see the connection between 9/11/01 and the Israeli/Palestinian? Something wrong – want to buy my glasses?" (Fox News, viewable at 'Barack Obama's Mentor, Jeremiah Wright - Anti Israel Sermon,' You tube, March 24, 2008).

 "We have supported state terrorism against the Palestinians and black South Africans, and now we are indignant that the stuff we have done is now brought back into our front yards. America's chickens are coming home to roost" (2003 sermon, quoted in Brian Ross & Rehab El-Buri, 'Obama's pastor: God damn America, U.S. to blame for 9/11,', March 13, 2008).

 When Rev. Wright writes about the state of Israel, he puts 'state' in quotes, de-legitimizing Israel as a country. "Islam has as many manifestations as Christianity and Judaism, but most Americans are only fed a media diet on Islam as it relates to the "war on terror" and the Palestinian Muslim [sic] problem...” ('Pastors' Page: Look Again,' Trinity United Church of Christ Bulletin, July 8, 2007, p. 8).

 On black racist anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan, upon whom Wright's Trinity Church magazine, the Trumpet, conferred its 2007 Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr. Trumpeter Award, Wright said: "His depth on analysis [sic] when it comes to the racial ills of this nation is astounding and eye-opening. He brings a perspective that is helpful and honest" (Quoted in Ronald Kessler, 'Obama and the Minister,' Wall Street Journal, March 14, 2008).
The Trumpet also referred to Farrakhan as a leader who "truly epitomized greatness" (Richard Cohen, 'Obama's Farrakhan Test,' Washington Post, January 15, 2008).

 Rev. Wright also published on his 'Pastor's Page' in his church's bulletin an opinion- piece from the Islamist terror organization, Hamas, which calls in its Charter for the destruction of Israel (Article 15) and the murder of Jews (Article 7). The Hamas piece, defended terrorism as a form of legitimate resistance, refused to recognize the right of Israel to exist, and compared the terror group's official charter to America's Declaration of Independence and referred to Israel as an "apartheid state" ('Pastor's Page: A Fresh View of the Palestinian Struggle,' Trinity United Church of Christ Bulletin, July 22, 2007, pp. 10-11).

 "When [Obama's] enemies find out that in 1984 I went to Tripoli" to visit Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi with Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, "a lot of his Jewish support will dry up quicker than a snowball in hell" (Mary Mitchell, 'Obama slights his own pastor, another error in wooing blacks,' Chicago Sun-Times, March 8, 2007).

 Ali Baghdadi, a Palestinian Arab writing on Wright's own page in the Trinity United Church bulletin, refers to Israel as an "apartheid state" whose inhabitants will "inevitably pack up and return to their native lands"; he also claims that "genocide and ethnic cleansing they [Palestinians] face every hour of the day." Later in the same piece, Baghdadi claims, "I must tell you that Israel was the closest ally to the White Supremacists of South Africa. In fact, South Africa allowed Israel to test its nuclear weapons in the ocean off South Africa. The Israelis were given a blank check; they could test whenever they desired and did not even have to ask permission. Both worked on an ethnic bomb that killed Blacks and Arabs" (Ali Baghdadi, 'Open Letter to Oprah on her visit to Palestine,' on the 'Pastors' Page,' Trinity United Church of Christ Bulletin, June 10, 2007, p. 8).

(But somehow, over a 20 year period of membership in Wright’s church, plus a close personal relationship, Senator Obama claims, in his dedicated run to be the next President of the United States, that he knew nothing of this long, tortuous history of lies and distortions against Israel and the Jewish people. If that seems a plausible explanation to you, please contact me immediately for possible purchase of very special bridge in Brooklyn) Jsk.

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 10:27 PM | Comments (0)

May 04, 2008

Mainstream U.S. Jewish Coalition Endorses Palestinian Statehood

(From my archives of “Not to be believed”) jsk

By Aaron Klein
The Jewish Press, March 7, 2008

Commentary below article – Jerome S. Kaufman

JERUSALEM - The Jewish Council for Public Affairs, an umbrella group of major mainstream U.S. Jewish organizations, has for the first time endorsed the idea of a Palestinian state. The decision is generating an angry backlash, most of it directed against the Orthodox Union (OU) which abstained from voting against the resolution that calls for a “two state solution” to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

The OU is one of the largest and most influential Orthodox Jewish organizations in America. Surveys have consistently shown that American Orthodox Jews overwhelmingly oppose a Palestinian state.

“It is an outrage that Jewish organizations would support a Palestinian state and it’s a shock the OU would abstain,” Mort Klein, president of the Zionist Organization of America, told The Jewish Press. “When the Palestinian Authority refuses to arrest terrorists, engages in and glorifies murder against Jews, and puts out maps showing all of Israel is Palestine surrounded by rifles, it becomes clear any Palest man state will be a terrorist state which will greatly harm Israel,” Klein said.

At a vote, last week during its annual meeting in Atlanta the JCPA resolved, “the organized American Jewish community should affirm its support for two independent democratic and economically viable states - the Jewish state of Israel and a state of Palestine. They are to be living side-by-side in peace and security” The resolution recognized American Jewry’s “diverse views about current and future policies of the Israeli government towards settlements,’ and blamed the standstill in the peace process on Palest man intransigence

The JCPA is a coalition of 14 major national Jewish groups and 125 local Jewish community relations councils. Among the groups are such giants (?) as the American Jewish Committee, American Jewish Congress, Anti-Defamation League, National Council of B’nai B’rith, Hadassah, the National Conference on Soviet Jewry and Hillel, the largest Jewish university outreach group.

While the other groups all voted in favor of the resolution, the OU has drawn the brunt of public criticism for its abstention.’ According to a source at the organization, e-mails have been pouring in from outraged Orthodox Jews. In a widely circulated e-mail, Pesach Aceman, a Canadian immigrant to Israel and a diarist for the BBC website, lambasted the Orthodox group as a “terror supporting organization through your silence.”

Ted Belman, who runs the Israpundit blog, wrote, “To my mind this resolution is very detrimental as it makes it harder for alternates to be forwarded. By endorsing this resolution are the OU and the others saying they support a two state solution regardless if it necessitates the division of Jerusalem?’

In an official clarification, the OU released a statement saying that while it abstained from the final vote endorsing a Palestinian state, the group still managed to insert into the resolution’s text a statement explaining that Israel’s repeated offers to establish a Palestinian state “have been met, time after time, by violence, incitement and terror.” The organization also successfully vetoed a clause which would have stated that the American Jewish community views the establishment or expansion of Israeli communities in the West Bank as an “impediment to peace.”

Nadia Matar, director of Woman in Green, a nationalist activist group in Israel, wrote in a widely circulated e-mail that the OU’s clarifications are not enough. “So now,” wrote Matar, “after the OU’s clarification, we ask the one million dollar question: Why is the OU still part of the JCPA? Where is the OU’s outrage?’

Asked by The Jewish Press whether the OU supports a Palestinian state, the organization’s executive vice president, Rabbi Tzvi Hersh Weinreb, answered “no.” Rabbi Weinreb said his group abstained from the vote rather than vote against the resolution “for procedural reasons.”

David Luchins, an OU officer who represented the organization during the vote, said abstaining “gives the OU more of a platform afterwards to explain to everyone why we abstained from the vote. If we would have just voted ‘no,’ that would have been the end of it.”

Rabbi Pesach Lerner, executive vice president of the National Council of Young Israel, another major Orthodox group representing hundreds of synagogues, said his organization, which is not part of the JCPA, opposes a Palestinian state, as do most Orthodox Jews.

“What two state solution? We just need just to look out the window and see the Kassams and Grad rockets and bullets flying. We need to read the papers and listen to the radio. There is a war going on. Now is the time to discuss defense, to guarantee security to the citizens of Israel,” said Lerner.
“The only solution that we should be thinking of is security... and the ability to live like normal human beings — without the concern of being shot at,” Lemer said.

(The organization of mainstream Jewish organizations continues to direct its membership into its dream world of false projection, misinformation, ignorance and denial of the obvious facts on the ground. Every “peace” agreement agreed upon has been ignored by the Palestinian Arabs from the moment signed. The farce all began with the super photo-op for Arafat, Rabin, Peres and Clinton on the White House lawn in 1993. Every town, every bit of territory in that has been turned over to the Arabs has just become another base for terror from which to kill Israelis. The latest tragic disasters have been the withdrawal from the Lebanese Security Zone and just last year, Gaza. Yet, the Israeli leadership and the “giant” (by what definition?) American Jewish Organizations have learned absolutely nothing.)

Jerome S. Kaufman

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 07:31 PM | Comments (0)

May 02, 2008

Obama Jive Talk

By Michelle Malkin

Barack Obama looked pale and wan at what he called his "big press conference" about the Rev. Jeremiah Wright on Tuesday afternoon – numb, chastened. defeated. Who knew that the greatest threat to his presidential campaign would come from the preacher who married him, baptized him and prayed with him? Obama should've known - that's who. "Yes, we can"? Try: Yes, you should have.

For the last 24 hours, Obama's campaign grappled with how to handle the aftermath of Wright's whirlwind tour of hatred this weekend - from Dallas, where he decried his "public crucifixion;” To Detroit, where he entertained NAACP bigwigs with impersonations of white people, mockeries of classical music and "white" marching bands, and lectures on racial brain theories, to the National Press Club, where he preened, strutted and head-wagged his way through an hour of bitter black liberation theologizing.

At first, Obama downplayed Wright's public appearances. Now he tells us he had to wait 24 hours to denounce Wright's National Press Club speech because he "hadn't seen it." After all this time on the campaign trail, we're back to the Obama-as-a-clueless-naif narrative again.

When he finally did view the Washington speech, Obama explained, he was "shocked" and "outraged" and "saddened" because "the person I saw was not the person that I'd come to know over 20 years." Pure, unadulterated horse manure.
Anyone with eyes can see that Wright's performances are finely honed, time-tested acts. His "imperialist"-bashing, anti-American, anti-white shtick wasn't developed overnight or over the past few years.

He's been peddling AIDS conspiracies for decades. He's been grievance-mongering about slavery for decades. He's been flirting with the Nation of Islam, which provided security for his speeches, for decades. He's been a shouting left-wing radical for decades.

Obama's best-selling "Audacity of Hope" is named after the first sermon of Wright's that he heard - decades ago - in which the pastor of racial resentment inveighed against an environment "where white folks' greed runs a world in need, apartheid in one hemisphere, apathy in another hemisphere." Yet only now has Obama concluded that Wright's sermons are "a bunch of rants that aren't grounded in truth."

A clergyman e-mailed after Obama's press conference: "It is inconceivable that Obama had no knowledge of Wright's views after 20 years as a member of that church. As a pastor: my heart-held, deepest beliefs and passions cannot be silenced. It is what I am. If I were given a microphone at the National Press Club, I would not speak on something that I had guardedly kept secret for most of my life. No, I would go to my main point, the center of my ministry, the core of my passion, to speak truth, as I know it to be.”

"How can Obama actually claim that this is news from his pastor? If it were his mailman, butcher or plumber - no problem, but his pastor - no way! It's not Wright who has changed his loony tune.

Just last year, Obama told the Chicago Tribune that Wright was his sounding board for truth: "What I value most about Pastor Wright is not his day-to-day political advice. He's much more of a sounding board for me to make sure that I am speaking as truthfully about what I believe as possible and that I'm not losing myself in some of the hype and hoopla and stress that's involved in national politics."

Just this March, in his racial-reconciliation speech, Obama urged us not to dismiss Wright as a "crank or a demagogue" and protested that he could "no more disown him than I can disown the black community.” Now, realizing how gravely his self-serving association with Wright has wounded his campaign, Obama himself has tried to do both those things - and expects us to believe his weak, belated claim that "when I say I find [Wright's] statements appalling, I mean it."

The "audacity of hope" indeed.

Posted by Jerome S. Kaufman at 04:14 PM | Comments (0)