Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Political Extremism Infiltrates the Pentagon

New Defense Department advisor Rosa Brooks is about as far to the left as one can go.
By Ryan Mauro

Brooks clearly does not see the horrid event as the culmination of a failed approach to a gathering threat, but an occurrence based on chance. Now, "al-Qaeda has become the vast global threat the administration imagined it to be in 2001," she says, owing it to the neocon administration's warped reality. The Israeli offensive in Gaza against Hamas also drew ire from Brooks. "The assault in Gaza has more to do with internal politics than its national security," she writes, apparently thinking that having neighboring territory controlled by a terrorist group that openly states its desire to destroy Israel isn't worthy of a military offensive. She opines that a military campaign won't bring about peace because Hamas will inevitably rearm and such actions create extremism, which foments the conflict. If this logic is true, then the U.S. might as well leave Afghanistan and stop any attacks on terrorist targets overseas. [more...]

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The Logical Fallacies of Appeasing Iran

By Nicholas Guariglia

Pundits are working overtime to convince you that the world can live with nuclear-armed mullahs. But it can't. Roger Cohen, one of the op-ed columnists for the New York Times, has, as of late, made it his personal pastime to defend the theocratic killers ruling Iran. One of his recent columns, entitled "Israel Cries Wolf," mocks and belittles Israeli concerns regarding Tehran's nuclear program, citing warning statements made by Israeli leaders over the years, most of which have (yet) to come to full fruition. This is an important passage, because it underscores the logical fallacies employed by proponents of appeasement with Iran. [more...]

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Subjective Nature of Torture

By Nick Guariglia

By now, I'm sure you've all read of the terrible things we did to Abu Zubaydah - what, with putting a caterpillar in his prison cell. Turns out the chap admitted to a fear of insects, so the CIA thought dangling some bugs in front of his face might get him to spill the beans about the next skyscraper he sought to knock down. This excruciating revelation comes in the aftermath of President Obama's decision to release the former Bush administration's so-called "torture memos." To afford captured detainees the ability to determine what is and is not objectively torture based upon their subjective cultural preferences, religious sensitivities, or personal dislikes and fears is not only asinine morality and poor practicality - but bad law, as well. Imagine if we enforced this logic to the fullest extent or at least to its natural conclusion. [more...]

Right-wing Extremism: A Real Threat

By Ryan Mauro

After eight years of the paranoid opposition biting at the heels of President Bush, rejoicing at any possibility of evildoing in an attempt to vindicate their bitterness, it is now President Obama's turn to feel the hyper-partisan heat. Radio talk show host Michael Savage and the Thomas More Law Center are suing Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano after her department issued a memo warning of "right-wing extremists." Parroting the claims of those who say the use of the term "radical Muslims" is bigoted, will lead to civil rights infringements, and is part of a political-religious crusade, we now hear that the term "right-wing extremists" is part of a political offensive aimed at destroying free speech.

The Drudge siren blared when the Washington Times report was published and within hours there was a mad dash by TV and radio hosts, blogs, and commentators to use the report to take aim at the Obama administration. They sunk their teeth into the portion of the memo warning that right-wing extremists could be motivated by issues like illegal immigration, gun control, abortion, or loss of U.S. sovereignty; they claimed that the Obama administration was viewing conservatives as dangerous radicals. Their quick and efficient drawing of arms, though, did not follow a quick and efficient reading past the first page of the three-page article. [more...]

Monday, April 20, 2009

The Durban Review

By Michael D. Evans from Geneva, Switzerland

The United Nations is hosting the Durban Review Conference, April 20-24, 2009, with the sole objective of eliminating racial discrimination. What a noble experiment. Unless, of course, eliminating racial discrimination excludes everyone other than Christians and Jews.

One would think the UN would invite President Barack Obama to be a keynote speaker rather than Iran's president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad who denies the Holocaust, and considers Israel a "stinking corpse" that needs to be wiped off the map.

In 2001, just days before the 9/11 attacks, the UN sponsored the first Durban Conference. Instead of fighting racial discrimination, Durban only fueled and fed it. The Crusaders (America) and the Zionists (Israel) were charged with racism, slavery, and colonialism. This despite the fact charges were being levied by Arab countries guilty of blatant discrimination. No mention was made during the conference of the genocide in Rwanda or Iraq or the gassing of the Kurds; no condemnation was levied against Iran's use of children as mine-sweepers during the Iran-Iraq War; nor was there a mention of the repressive regime in Saudi Arabia.

Jews are banned from setting a foot on the soil in Saudi Arabia and throughout the Middle East. It is no wonder that Durban deteriorated into an anti-Semitic hate fest against Israel.

The U.S. and Israel exited the proceedings in South Africa in protest while conference goers took to the streets to parade vile posters, which portrayed the Jews as having fangs dripping with blood. Following 9/11, the world media refused to call the events of that infamous day what they were: bigotry against the Americans (Crusaders).

Libya has chaired the planning committee, whose membership includes Iran and Cuba. "It is a conference on human rights that is being chaired by people who abuse these rights."

Among the high-ranking officials who will address the conference at Monday's opening session, which coincidentally falls on the eve of Holocaust Memorial Day, is Iran's President Ahmadinejad.

The non-governmental group, UN Watch, has noted that Saudi Arabia, also with a problematic record on human rights, has donated $150,000 to the event; China has donated $20,000 and Iran $40,000. Russia, committee chair on the draft text, had contributed $600,000.

Although the U.S. has left the door open for the possibility of a compromise, this week it issued a clear position statement in which it said it would not participate in the conference as long as the text contained problematic clauses relating to free speech. It also objected to the opening paragraph of the text, which reaffirms the 2001 document that singled out Israel.

The war on terror is, in fact, not a war against terror or against an ideology; it is a war against bigotry and racism. This war has never really been fought.

Even entertaining the willingness to debate the right of the Jewish people to exist is beyond comprehension. The Holy Grail of understanding is that racism and bigotry are the soil in which the virus of terror grows. This is a war that cannot be won unless the root of racism is exposed.

The leaders of the countries which will participate in the Durban Review Conference are bigots and truly believe the diabolical lies quoted by Hitler from Mein Kampf and the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion are true. This is the reason mosques, mullahs and madrassas are allowed to teach that Jews are descendants of monkeys and pigs; all wars are caused by the Jews; the Jews invented AIDS; and the Zionists attacked America on 9/11 and blamed the Arabs.

It is believed there is a Jewish conspiracy to rule the world, and that the Jews control the media and banks. Some believe Jews drink the blood of non-Jews and also use their blood to make matzo – or the "blood-libel" myth.

Ahmadinejad has become the poster boy for racial discrimination. He smiles, while watching his nuclear centrifuges on a fast-forward track, and says he likes Jews; he just hates Zionists and denies the Holocaust. His rhetoric did not appear to inspire the millions of Zionists living in Israel who are aware that one-third of the Jewish race was exterminated during the Holocaust – including five million adults and almost one million children.

America thought she was exempt from terror until 9/11, and still resists today acknowledging that she was attacked for being a Christian nation (Crusaders.)

When the UN hosted a specially-convened session of the 43rd General Assembly in December 1988 for PLO chief Yasser Arafat, I was the first journalist to challenge him to denounce the PLO racist covenant which calls for the destruction of the Jewish people.

America's first black president has a golden opportunity, after having been wined and dined by European heads of state. He could be a twenty-first century Abraham Lincoln and mobilize the EU against participating in the Durban Review Conference by simply making a public appeal to them. If the EU agreed not to attend the event, it would be a major blow against racism and bigotry.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Iran About to Join the 'Nuclear Club'

By John LeBoutillier

Every week brings ominous new signs that Iran soon will possess operational nuclear weapons. Just this week Israeli President Shimon Peres - their senior diplomat and wise man - issued an uncharacteristic warning: "If (President) Ahmadinejad doesn't work with the Obama Administration and the international community to stop building nuclear weapons, of course we will then strike."

This blunt threat is a startling development coming from President Peres, a normally calm, collected and reticent-to-bluster statesman.

The Israeli President - a ceremonial post not a policy-making one - then added: "we will not be able to move forward on this without the United States."

And that is the rub. Will President Obama ever go along with a pre-emptive Israeli strike on Iran? A strike which will roil the international world, cause oil prices to spike to perhaps anywhere from $100 - $200 per barrel virtually overnight? A strike, which will earn him the condemnation of the Third World - and maybe our 'banker' China? A strike, which may cause some sort of Iranian retaliation - either directly or from their surrogates in the international terror world?

Will Obama - under heavy pressure from the pro-Israeli lobby here at home - be able to withstand that pressure to stop Iran before they use the nukes on Israel while Ahmadinejad flaunts Iran's imminent entry into the 'Nuclear Club?'

This is a decision that Obama does not want to face. He hopes to talk, yak, delay, stall this mess in hopes that something else - a coup perhaps or Ahmadinejad's removal or Russian intervention - will stop their nuclear weapons program. Just having nuclear reactors is not the problem; making weapons grade plutonium is a major problem for the world. [more...]

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The Urgency of Iran

By Nicholas Guariglia

President Obama has consistently and deferentially referred to Iran as the "Islamic Republic" - perhaps subliminally signaling that we seek no regime change and recognize the political legitimacy of the ruling clerics. This is worrisome, especially given the news this week that Manhattan's District Attorney Robert Morgenthau indicted Le Fang Wei, a Chinese financier, for duping several American banks and peddling nuclear materials to the mullahs. Reportedly, Fang Wei set up four bogus import-export companies that worked with six Iranian shell firms, with the largest recipient believed to be a subsidiary of the Iranian defense ministry.

There were some 58 transactions in all, including shipments of banned materials from Beijing to Tehran between 2006 and 2008. Among them: 33,000 pounds of a specialized aluminum alloy (used in long-range missile production); 66,000 pounds of tungsten copper plate (used in missile guidance systems); and 53,900 pounds of maraging steel rods (an incredibly hard metal used in uranium enrichment to make the casings for nuclear bombs).

Herein lies the asymmetry to Iran's nuclear pursuits: if their military program is shut down, they will continue to secretly weaponize their "civilian" nuclear program; if that is shut down, they will acquire atomic materials through third parties - sometimes, as in this case, from within the borders of the Great Satan itself - and across the black-market; if those efforts are stifled, the mullahs will ascertain the bomb from their rogue allies in Pyongyang, or elsewhere.
There are many avenues the Khamenei-Ahmadinejad-Rafsanjani regime may travel, all of which must lead to a U.S.-led roadblock at the nuclear intersection. But there is no evidence that this will be the case. More than three years ago, Joe Biden, then in the Senate, told the Israelis they would eventually have to accept a nuclear-armed Iran. Today, Vice President Biden warns Israel not to take action against Iran's nuclear program. This is untenable. Mr. Obama must be wary of these insufficient Cohen-like rationalizations, and avoid falling prey to their deceptions. He must understand the urgency of the situation, for if he votes "present" on this issue as well, there will be repercussions to pay. [more...]

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Obama Should Have Shot Down North Korea's Missile

By Nicholas Guariglia

The danger to America will multiply if Obama is perceived as weak and indecisive early on.

Vice President Biden once warned that the world would "test" Barack Obama. That slimy toad Kim Jong Il was the first to take up the challenge with the launch of its Taepodong-2 long-range missile, which constituted an unjustified provocation from North Korea, although it's entirely consistent with Kim's previous patterns of behavior.

Victor D. Cha, the former director for Asian affairs in Bush's White House, describes these North Korean escalations as "coercive bargaining" in his 2003 book Nuclear North Korea: A Debate on Engagement Strategies. Cha explains:

"These provocations are deliberate pinpricks - i.e., they fall short of all-out war but are serious enough to rattle the allies and raise concerns about escalation. Washington, Seoul, and Tokyo are thus manipulated into the awkward position of wanting to respond punitively to DPRK misbehavior, but are constrained by fears of provoking an unnecessary and costly larger conflict. As a result, the allies usually issue a denouncement of the DPRK act, but still come to the negotiating table to reduce tensions. From Pyongyang's perspective, the purpose of these provocations is not to win some military advantage but to create a crisis, disrupting the status quo and initiating a coercive bargaining process that eventuates in a new status quo on current or new negotiations more favorable to the North."

It is high time we stop playing Kim's game. There is no better person than a new president - and no better time than an economic crisis - to take serious and swift action against such a tyrannical despot hell bent on nuclear proliferation. In short, we should have blown the North Korean missile out of the sky. Here's why:

Struggling through an economic downturn, Americans are more worried and anxious about domestic issues. The world's tyrants sense this and look on advantageously. Additionally, President Obama is perceived around the world as a borderline pacifist. His is not only a new, untested administration, but he himself is a new, inexperienced face on the international scene. (In case you're wondering, the tyrants like that, too.)

Kim Jong Il no doubt feels more comfortable provoking Obama than he would have, say, John McCain. It should be President Obama's mission, then, to force Kim out of his comfort zone by taking a hard line against Pyongyang. Standing up to North Korea in a brazen fashion would be unexpected at this time and would be unexpected from this administration. It would come as a surprise to Kim's inner circle - and to dictators all over the globe - which is all the more reason why Obama should consider doing it. [more...]