Monthly Archives: August 2006
Update: Poll results — 75% said “Yes!” to profiling at airports.
Posted by permission from Dr. Daniel Pipes. Its appearance is independent of this blog, and should not be construed to either agree or disagree with the opinions expressed on this blog, or on any other website.
by Daniel Pipes
New York Sun
August 22, 2006
[NY Sun title: “Calls for Racial Profiling Increase After London Plot”]
The debate over profiling airline passengers revived after the thwarted Islamist plot to bomb 10 airplanes in London on Aug. 10. The sad fact is, through inertia, denial, cowardice, and political correctness, Western airport security services – with the notable exception of Israel’s – search primarily for the implements of terrorism, while largely ignoring passengers.
Although there has been some progress since the attacks of September 11, 2001, most involves the scrutiny of all travelers’ actions. For example, in 2003, the Transportation Security Administration, charged with protecting American airplanes, launched a passenger profiling system known as Screening of Passengers by Observation Techniques, or SPOT, now operating in twelve U.S. airports.
Adopting techniques used by the U.S. Customs Service and by Israeli airport security, SPOT is “the antidote to racial profiling,” TSA spokeswoman Ann Davis, said. It discerns, she said, “extremely high levels of stress, fear and deception” through “behavioral pattern recognition.” SPOT agents observe passengers moving about the airport, with TSA agents looking for such physical symptoms as sweating, rigid posture, and clenched fists. A screener then engages “selectees” in conversation and asks unexpected questions, looking at body language for signs of unnatural responses. Most selectees are immediately released, but about one-fifth are interviewed by the police.
After the London plot, the British authorities instituted a crash-course in SPOT, learning directly from their American counterparts.
Building on this approach, an Israeli machine, called Cogito, uses algorithms, artificial-intelligence software, and polygraph principles to discern passengers with “hostile intent.” In trial runs with control groups, the machine incorrectly fingered 8% of innocent travelers as potential threats and let 15% of the role-acting terrorists slip through.
While methods that target the whole population have general value – SPOT did discover passengers with forged visas, fake IDs, stolen airline tickets, and various forms of contraband – its utility for counterterrorism is dubious. Terrorists trained to answer questions convincingly, avoid sweating, and control stress should easily be able to evade the system.
The airport disruptions following the thwarted London plot prompted much discussion about the need to focus on the source of Islamist terrorism and to profile Muslims. In the words of a Wall Street Journal editorial, “a return to any kind of normalcy in travel is going to require that airport security do a better job of separating high-risk passengers from unlikely threats.”
This argument is gaining momentum. A recent poll found that 55% of Britons support passenger profiling that takes into account “background or appearance,” with only 29% against. Lord Stevens, the former chief of Scotland Yard, has endorsed focusing on young Muslim men. The Guardian reports that “some EU countries, particularly France and the Netherlands, want to … introduce explicit checks on Muslim travelers.”
One politician in Wisconsin and two in New York State came out in favor of similar profiling. A Fox News anchor, Bill O’Reilly, has suggested that Muslim passengers ages 16 to 45 “all should be spoken with.” Mike Gallagher, one of the most popular American radio talk-show hosts, has said he wants “a Muslim-only [passenger] line” at airports. In a column for the Evening Bulletin, Robert Sandler proposed putting “Muslims on one plane and put the rest of us on a different one.”
The British Department for Transport reportedly is seeking to introduce passenger profiling that includes taking religious background into account. News from British airports indicates that this has already begun – sometimes even by fellow passengers.
Three conclusions emerge from this discussion. First, because Islamist terrorists are all Muslims, there does need to be a focus on Muslims. Second, such notions as “Muslim-only lines” at airports are infeasible; rather, intelligence must drive efforts to root out Muslims with an Islamist agenda.
Third, the chances of Muslim-focused profiling being widely implemented remain negligible. As the same Wall Street Journal editorial notes, “the fact that we may have come within a whisker of losing 3,000 lives over the Atlantic still isn’t preventing political correctness from getting in the way of smarter security.”
Noting the limited impact that losing 3,000 lives had in 2001 and building on my “education by murder” hypothesis – that people wake up to the problem of radical Islam only when blood is flowing in the streets – I predict that effective profiling will only come into effect when many more Western lives, say 100,000, have been lost.
Mary Katherine fills in for Michelle Malkin’s Vent and mentions how LDS dominated the completion and that Benji Schwimmer took the crown.
Good entertainment. Mormons dominated on “So You Think You Can Dance”, with the LDS kids earning five of the top twenty spots on the popular summer show. Benji Schwimmer, who just came off a two-year dancing hiatus for his mission, took the crown. It’s Social Conservatism with rhythm. …[Watch the Vent]
A photographer, who had worked for an alternative New York picture agency, had been carrying three cameras with him, when he left his home in Manhattan that sparkling Tuesday morning, and started walking south towards the plumes of smoke. He took some pretty amazing (and disturbing) pictures.
Deeyah is a Muslim singer born in Norway who is speaking out against oppression of Women in Muslim culture. Her womens rights advocacy takes on issues from the burka to honor killings. This brave Women deserves our support.
Freemuse hands the microphone to Deeyah – a Muslim pop singer and an activist with a serious message. She has placed herself in the crossfire of today’s most controversial, religious issues
I have always experienced prejudice and discrimination for being a woman, for being Muslim and for not being white. I think these issues cannot be solved without reform from within my own community first. I hope that I can address and articulate some of these issues both through my music as well as through other forms of expression – such as writing, short films, and documentaries as well as through general activism within the community. I hope to see Muslim women claiming their rightful place within society without any fears of judgment, discrimination or violence.
I come from a culture of fear and silence. Everyone within my own community knows about the abuse and mistreatment of women, but no one says anything. …[Read more]
From time-to-time I like to check the speed of my internet connection, if for no other reason than to ensure I’m getting the bandwidth I’ve paid for. The site allows you to select servers to ping from around the country on an interactive map and graphically displays connections as they travel with varying speeds along the way. It also lets you store results of tests for your computer and sort them by date, time, speed and distance.
This is not a clash of civilizations as it is commonly referred to. Rather, it’s a clash among the members of one civilization-Islamists vs. moderate Muslims (by moderate I mean anti-Islamist Muslims). Muslims are the first victims of the deadly jihad of the Islamists, e.g., Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Algeria, Sudan, Israel/Palestine, to name a few.
It is estimated by scholars that some 10%-15% Muslims support militant Islamists goals that use jihad as the method to enforce its ideology. That translates to 100,000,000 – 150,000,000 Muslims! Add to that the general consensus that 50% of Muslims are sympathetic to Islamists and you have 600,000,000 – 750,000,000 Muslims that side with or are sympathetic to the imperialistic, militant Islamic ideology. That is something to remember when you hear the common canard, “these radicals represent only a small, tiny faction of Muslims.”
What is more…
Just as the deviant Western ideologies of fascism and communism challenged and then had to be expelled from the West, so it is with militant Islam and the Muslim world. The battle for the soul of Islam will undoubtedly last many years and take many lives, and it likely to be the greatest ideological battle of the post-Cold War era. (Pipes, Militant Islam Reaches America)
The West cannot fix the problems germinating in the Muslim world. The West are outsiders, and though the West can contain and deter as like it did with communism, it cannot cure what ails Islam.
That is where moderate Muslims come in; they are the only hope the world has of eradicate this toxic, deadly, virulent version of Islam. That is to say, the vaccine can only come from the Islamic world. Which is one reason I love the work of Dr. Jasser, a Muslim who gets it, and has taken action to step up and counter-jihad the Islamists.
Dr. ‘AbdulHamid Ahmad AbuSulayman is a respected Muslim who wrote a book called Crisis in the Muslim Mind:
Across the Muslim world today if anything is self-evident it is that the Ummah is badly in need of reform. On this point it can be stated with confidence that all Muslims are agreed. Poverty and injustice characterize the face of Muslim lands from the Atlantic to the Pacific. Pollution and corruption are the order of the day in societies where the gulf between then and the developed countries of the world has never been wider. Politics in the Muslim world are all too often the politics of desperation, economics the economics of deprivation, and culture the culture of despair.
Crisis in the Muslim Mind examines the intellectual and historical roots of the malaise that has overspread the Ummah and threatens to efface its identity. First published in Arabic in 1991, this important work (in an abridged English translation) is designed to familiarize educated and concerned Muslims with the nature of the crisis confronting them, and to suggest the steps necessary to overcome it.
Journal entry as posted on all-encompassingly.com
As long as Americans value the false premises of Political Correctness vs. a common sense & realistic approach to security, give credence to the ACLU, and yield to the shame based propaganda of CAIR et al.; we will remain vulnerable to Islamists who exploit to nefarious ends the very freedoms they are committed to destroying.
Journal entry as posted on all-encompassingly.com
Our family favorite is Benji. My kids can hardly stand to wait for the finale tonight. We voted over 20 times last week for Benji. Heidi is very good as well, but Benji’s dancing skills, stage presence and personality are unmatched.
Mormondom’s dancing missionary has reminded church members of our great dance heritage, while at the same time teaching non-members about the gospel in action.
By Rebecca Birkin
This summer, many LDS members have enjoyed gathering their families to watch Benji Schwimmer, a finalist on Fox TV’s popular program, “So You Think You Can Dance.” Benji is not only a versatile and charismatic dancer, but also an active member of the Church.
As LDS fans rally behind Benji, they cheer what Benji represents ― great talent refreshingly combined with outstanding character.
Tonight, in the Fox network two-part finale conclusion, viewers will discover who among the four finalists will win ― Benji, his cousin Heidi Groskreutz, Donyelle Jones (Benji’s partner for most of the competition), or Virginia native Travis Wall. When asked if he felt worried competing against his cousin, Benji said they weren’t in competition.
“Heidi and I are just so honored to be together till the end [of the competition],” Benji explained. It doesn’t matter who wins because, “We’ve already agreed to share part of the prize money if either one of us gets it. We are dance partners so there really isn’t a sense of competitiveness. We’re blood!” …[Read more]
Thousands flock to Clarkston’s Martin Harris Pageant
CLARKSTON – When it was first performed as a community musical in 1983, few here might have guessed that “Martin Harris: The Man Who Knew” would one day draw crowds of almost 50 times the town’s population each August.
Around 30,000 people from near and far are expected to have visited the western Cache Valley town by the end of the performance’s run this year on Friday.
Known within The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as one of the three witnesses of the origin and authenticity of the Book of Mormon, Martin Harris’s name is also recognized outside LDS circles due to the popular pageant and his gravesite monument in Clarkston. …[Read more]
WASHINGTON – President Bush plans to stay overnight in Salt Lake City later this month, make a visit to LDS Church leaders and raise some cash for Sen. Orrin Hatch, The Salt Lake Tribune has learned.
While the president’s schedule is not yet solid and may change, Bush currently plans to fly into Utah on Aug. 30 and stay overnight before a speech to a convention of American Legion members the next day.
After speaking to the convention, the president is expected to visit with the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and then headline a fundraiser for Hatch, who is seeking a sixth term in the Senate this year. Bush also will be joined on the trip by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. …[Read more]
SANDY – “I go into a movie looking for something to acknowledge my human condition, my brokenness,” Richard Dutcher told an audience of LDS book and DVD sellers.
“I want the meat,” he said; he doesn’t think audiences relate to the perfect people they see portrayed in recent LDS movies.
Dutcher seemed to be addressing other producers of LDS movies, who sat with him on the panel, when he asked, “Why are we so timid now?” He also asked, “Where is Jesus Christ in our movies?” …[Read more]
My wonderful wife is an old school JFK Dem who loves the Clintons. I am a Reaganite conservative. We both support President Bush. I asked my wife tonight, “If it were between Mitt or Hillary, whom would you vote for?” Her response, “Hmm, that would be tough.” I replied, “OK, you’re a confused Dem!” She laughed.
My wife is one the brightest and most intelligent persons I know. She is a Mensa, a gifted Old Testament scholar, an incredible genealogist, speaks five languages, has a great heart, and loves the gospel, her family, and, proud to say, me. While I may not fully understand her left leaning politics, I do understand I’m a blessed man to have her as my wife.
We are living proof Dems and Repubs can get along; not just get along, but thrive and enrich each other in synergistic ways that can only occur from contrasting viewpoints and positions.
Political scientist and pollster Dan Jones thinks reasons why Utah is the “reddest” state include the Democratic Party’s inability to articulate an exit strategy for the war in Iraq.
To simply set a date by which American troops should get out of that country “doesn’t work,” Jones said in a talk Sunday to the congregation of the First Unitarian Church, 569 S. 1300 East. Jones, whose Dan Jones & Associates firm conducts surveys for the Deseret Morning News, spoke as part of the Unitarians’ Summer Forum series.
The topic of his speech was “Why Is Utah the Reddest State? And So What?”
Commenting on Iraq, Jones said he believes civil war will complicate the scene there. Syria and Iran are “involved up to their necks” in the unrest, he believes.
Other reasons why Republicans dominate Utah politics include these, Jones said in his speech and an interview afterward:
- The inability of the state’s Democrats and independents “to relate with a Democrat at the national level.” The party’s nominee for president in 1992, Bill Clinton, racked up the lowest vote in Utah. “That could be the same with Hillary” Clinton should she be nominated, he said.
- Democrats have no clear policy on immigration.
- The inability to pass a minimum wage boost, which means no increase in pay “for the little guy.” Democrats should have been able to muster the votes in Congress for an increase, he said, although they may have had to do some compromising with Republicans about other issues in order to swing some GOP votes their way.
- Democrats are labeled as pro-choice and in favor of same-sex marriage, which goes against the grain of many Utahns.
- Many members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints “feel that Democrat policies are counter to church positions.” …[Read more]
Posted by permission of Strategic Forecasting, Inc. at http://www.stratfor.com/.
Cease-Fire: Shaking Core Beliefs in the Middle East
By George Friedman
An extraordinary thing happened in the Middle East this month. An Israeli army faced an Arab army and did not defeat it — did not render it incapable of continued resistance. That was the outcome in 1948, 1956, 1967, 1973 and 1982. But it did not happen in 2006. Should this outcome stand, it will represent a geopolitical earthquake in the region — one that fundamentally shifts expectations and behaviors on all sides.
It is not that Hezbollah defeated the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). It did not. By most measures, it got the worst of the battle. Nevertheless, it has been left standing at the end of the battle. Its forces in the Bekaa Valley and in the Beirut area have been battered, though how severely is not yet clear. Its forces south of the Litani River were badly hurt by the Israeli attack. Nevertheless, the correlation of forces was such that the Israelis should have dealt Hezbollah, at least in southern Lebanon, a devastating blow, such that resistance would have crumbled. IDF did not strike such a blow — so as the cease-fire took effect, Hezbollah continued to resist, continued to inflict casualties on Israeli troops and continued to fire rockets at Israel. Hezbollah has not been rendered incapable of continued resistance, and that is unprecedented.
In the regional equation, there has been an immutable belief: that, at the end of the day, IDF was capable of imposing a unilateral military solution on any Arab force. Israel might have failed to achieve its political goals in its various wars, but it never failed to impose its will on an enemy force. As a result, all neighboring nations and entities understood there were boundaries that could be crossed only if a country was willing to accept a crushing Israeli response. All neighboring countries — Egypt, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon, prior to the collapses of central authority — understood this and shaped their behavior in view of it. Even when Egypt and Syria initiated war in 1973, it was with an understanding that their war aims had to be limited, that they had to accept the probability of defeat and had to focus on postwar political maneuvers rather than on expectations of victory.
The Egyptians withdrew from conflict and accepted the Sinai as a buffer zone, largely because 1973 convinced them that continued conflict was futile. Jordan, since 1970, has been effectively under the protection of Israel against threats from Syria and internal dangers as well. Syria has not directly challenged the Israelis since 1973, preferring indirect challenges and, not infrequently, accommodation with Israel. The idea of Israel as a regional superpower has been the defining principle.
In this conflict, what Hezbollah has achieved is not so much a defeat of Israel as a demonstration that destruction in detail is not an inevitable outcome of challenging Israel. Hezbollah has showed that it is possible to fight to a point that Israel prefers a cease-fire and political settlement to a military victory followed by political accommodation. Israel might not have lost any particular battle, and a careful analysis of the outcome could prove its course to be reasonable. But the loss of the sense — and historical reality — of the inevitability of Israeli military victory is a far more profound defeat for Israel, as this clears the way for other regional powers to recalculate risks.
Posted by permission from Dr. Daniel Pipes. Its appearance is independent of this blog, and should not be construed to either agree or disagree with the opinions expressed on this blog, or on any other website.
by Daniel Pipes
August 14, 2006
In his first response to the major terror airline scare in London, President Bush said on Aug. 10 that “The recent arrests that our fellow citizens are now learning about are a stark reminder that this nation is at war with Islamic fascists who will use any means to destroy those of us who love freedom, to hurt our nation.”
His use of the term “Islamic fascists” spurred attention and controversy, especially among Islamists.
At a pro-Hizbullah rally in front of the White House, on Aug. 12, the crowd (in the Washington Post‘s description) “grew most agitated when speakers denounced President Bush’s references to Islam.” In particular, the president of the Muslim American Society, Esam Omesh, won a massive roar of approval when he (deliberately?) mischaracterized the president’s statement: “Mr. Bush: Stop calling Islam ‘Islamic fascism.'”
Nihad Awad of the Council on American-Islamic Relations called the term “ill-advised” and “counter-productive,” repeating CAIR’s usual conceit that violence in the name of Islam has, in fact, nothing to do with Islam. Even more preposterously, Awad went on to suggest that we “take advantage of these incidents to make sure that we do not start a religious war against Islam and Muslims.”
CAIR’s board chairman, Parvez Ahmed, sent an open letter to President Bush: “You have on many occasions said Islam is a ‘religion of peace.’ Today you equated the religion of peace with the ugliness of fascism.” Actually, Bush did not do that (he equated just one form of “the religion of peace” with fascism), but Ahmed inadvertently pointed to the evolution in the president’s – and the country’s – thinking away from bromides to real thinking.
Edina Lekovic from the Muslim Public Affairs Council repeated the MPAC argument of the need to cultivate Islamists for counterterrorism: “When the people we need most in the fight against terrorism, American Muslims, feel alienated by the president’s characterization of these supposed terrorists, that does more damage than good.” (Supposed terrorists?) Her case, however, has recently been undercut by the example of Mubin Shaikh and the Toronto 17, in which an Islamist informer has been widely shunned by fellow Muslims. Lekovic did, however, make a valid semantic point: “It would have been far more accurate had he linked the situation to a segment of people rather than an entire faith, along the lines of, say, radical Muslim fascists.”
The Muslim Association of Britain announced that it “condemns” Bush’s wording and worries that such comments “gives yet another excuse for the targeting of the Muslim minority by extreme right-wing forces in the West.” This fear is disingenuous, given how few anti-Muslim incidents do take place in the West, compared to the number of Muslim attacks on Westerners.
There are also rumblings of a more aggressive Muslim response. “Some hypermarkets in Riyadh,” reports the Arab News, “had already withdrawn American products from their shelves in response to the US’ anti-Islam campaign.” Will this incident lead to a further separation of civilizations?
(1) This is hardly the first time Bush has used the term Islamic fascist (or Islamofascist); it has become a part of his routine vocabulary since his path-breaking speech on this subject in October 2005, a speech that, oddly, was dismissed by the mainstream media as a retread, while this glancing reference is treated as major news. (Newsweek calls it a “rhetorical bomb.”) Go figure.
(2) What was new on Aug. 10 was his formulation that the United States is “at war with Islamic fascists.” That was more direct and forceful than anything prior.
(3) Islamic fascist and Islamofascist are more used than ever before, as can be confirmed by a search for those words in my weblog entry, “Calling Islamism the Enemy.” Notably, Senator Rick Santorum gave a powerful speech on July 20 in which he 29 times used the term fascist or fascism with reference to Islam. MSNBC and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution have both suggested that Santorum’s use of this term accounted for its adaptation by the White House.
(4) Protests from Islamists notwithstanding, Bush has indicated that he plans to continue using this term. His spokesman, Tony Snow, explained in an e-mail interview with the Cox newspaper chain that Bush has gradually shifted from the “war on terrorism” to “war with Islamic fascists.” With this new specificity, Snow continues, Bush “tries to identify the ideology that motivates many organized terrorist groups. He also tries to make it clear that the label does not apply to all or most Muslims, but to the tiny factions,” such as Al-Qaeda.
(5) It appears that Islamist protests have been counterproductive, managing the negative double play of bringing more attention to the term and irritating the White House.
(6) I applaud the increasing willingness to focus on some form of Islam as the enemy but find the word fascist misleading in this context. Few historic or philosophic connections exist between fascism and radical Islam. Fascism glorifies the state, emphasizes racial “purity,” promotes social Darwinism, denigrates reason, exalts the will, and rejects organized religion – all outlooks anathema to Islamists.
In contrast, Radical Islam has many more ties, both historic and philosophic, to Marxism-Leninism. While studying for his doctorate in Paris, Ali Shariati, the key intellectual behind the turn to Islam in Iran in the 1970s, translated Franz Fanon, Che Guevara, and Jean-Paul Sartre into Persian. More broadly, quoting the Iranian analyst Azar Nafisi, radical Islam “takes its language, goals, and aspirations as much from the crassest forms of Marxism as it does from religion. Its leaders are as influenced by Lenin, Sartre, Stalin, and Fanon as they are by the Prophet.” During the cold war, Islamists preferred the Soviet Union to the United States; today, they have more and deeper connections to the hard left than to the hard right.
(7) Nonetheless, some voices gamely argue for the accuracy of “Islamic fascists.” After himself using the term on television, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff justified it by noting that bin Laden has
talked about restoring the Caliphate, the empire that existed in the southern Mediterranean centuries ago. That is nothing-it’s deranged, but essentially it is a vision of a totalitarian empire with him leading under some kind of perverted conception of religion. That comes very close to satisfying my definition of fascism. It might not be classic fascism that you had with Mussolini or Hitler, but it is a totalitarian intolerance-imperialism that has a vision that is totally at odds with Western society and our freedoms and rule of law.
The Washington Times also endorsed the term in an editorial titled “It’s Fascism.”
Fascism is a chauvinistic political philosophy that exalts a group over the individual-usually a race or nation, but in this case the adherents of a religion. Fascism also espouses centralized autocratic rule by that group in suppression of others. It usually advocates severe economic and social regimentation and the total or near-total subordination of the individual to the political leadership. This accurately describes the philosophies of Hitler, Mussolini, the leaders of Imperial Japan and other fascistic regimes through history. It also describes Thursday’s terrorists. It very accurately describes the philosophy of al Qaeda, Hezbollah, Hamas and many other stripes of Islamism around the world.
(8) The use of Islamic fascists should be seen as part of a decades-long search for the right term to name a form of Islam that is recognizably political, extreme, and often violent. I have already confessed in that I am on my fifth term (having previously used neo-orthodox, fundamentalist, and militant, and now using radical and Islamist). While Islamic fascists beats terrorists, let’s hope that a better consensus term soon emerges. My vote is for Islamists.
Too rich! Take SnarkerNacle’s survey.
Can someone please tell me who is Mark Bulter?
… The question now is, is there room enough for two current events bloggers in the Nacle? Sure, sure, Guy dominates the Mormon Archipeligo’s current events with his backcountry California lawyerly ingratiating style, and the LDS Patriot dominates LDSelect box three, frequently crowding out all others. But, that is not the point! The Point is there can only be ONE! That is the whole point of the American capitalist spirit, crush the competition and be the dominant force in whatever you do.
So, who will it be? Will Guy Murray’s obsession with everything Mitt reign supreme, or will the LDS Patriot’s persistent torrent of the tangential flood the Naccle, washing away all others? …[Read more]
1. What should happen in the Battle for the Mormon Current Events blog supremacy?
LINDON – As an old proverb says, give a man a fish, he will eat for a day. Teach a man to fish, he will eat for a lifetime.
Dr. Scott Healey of Lindon and several colleagues from the Academy of LDS Dentists have applied that biblical lesson to dentistry, sharing knowledge with dentists in developing countries so they, in turn, can provide better care for their patients. …[Read more]
I took Peterson’s advice and have since read several of Bernard Lewis’ books, including the ones Peterson recommended. Peterson states, “Keep reading Daniel Pipes. Another good writer-perhaps the greatest scholar of Islam writing in English-is Bernard Lewis, an Englishman now long retired from Princeton. All of his books are worth reading, but two short relatively recent ones are particularly and directly relevant to the current situation: What Went Wrong? and The Crisis of Islam.”
A book I will finish in the next day or so is Militant Islam Reaches America by Daniel Pipes; this is one of the best books I’ve read on this topic.
During the Cold War, both sides possessed weapons of mass destruction, but neither side used them, deterred by what was known as MAD, mutual assured destruction. Similar constraints have no doubt prevented their use in the confrontation between India and Pakistan. In our own day a new such confrontation seems to be looming between a nuclear-armed Iran and its favorite enemies, named by the late Ayatollah Khomeini as the Great Satan and the Little Satan, i.e., the United States and Israel. Against the U.S. the bombs might be delivered by terrorists, a method having the advantage of bearing no return address. Against Israel, the target is small enough to attempt obliteration by direct bombardment.
It seems increasingly likely that the Iranians either have or very soon will have nuclear weapons at their disposal, thanks to their own researches (which began some 15 years ago), to some of their obliging neighbors, and to the ever-helpful rulers of North Korea. The language used by Iranian President Ahmadinejad would seem to indicate the reality and indeed the imminence of this threat.
Would the same constraints, the same fear of mutual assured destruction, restrain a nuclear-armed Iran from using such weapons against the U.S. or against Israel? …[Read more]
Michelle Malkin has an excellent Vent, The return of terror in the skies, she starts, “You know why our motto is ‘never again’? Because our enemies motto is ‘try, try again’.
She gets it. Too bad the majority of America is not so vigilant.
Militant Islam is the scourge of today, and unless combated diligently on every front, victory will be theirs.
A new video of British Muslims at a 7/7 conference shows just how big a problem the West has with a fifth column of terror supporters among us. In the video, a Jamaican born immigrant named Trevor Brooks–introduced as Abu Izadeen– takes the microphone and goes off on an hour-long rant about how Britain can avoid another 7/7 attack. …[further details and vidoe here]
JERUSALEM (AP) – After a stormy debate Sunday, Israel’s Cabinet approved a Mideast cease-fire, agreeing to silence the army’s guns in less than 24 hours. The Israeli military embarked on a last-minute push to devastate Hezbollah guerrillas, rocketing south Beirut with at least 20 missiles.
The 24-0 vote, with one abstention, came a day after the Lebanese government approved the agreement and Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah gave his grudging consent. The truce was to take effect Monday morning. …[Read more]
Constitution threatened by homeschool case
Expert: U.S. parent-led education endangered by U.N. children’s protocol
August 13, 2006
A couple in Brussels has been threatened with criminal neglect for schooling their children at home, and a U.S. expert on the issue told WorldNetDaily the case actually could pose a threat to the sovereignty of the U.S. Constitution.
That’s because if the basis for the legal arguments being made by Belgian prosecutors ever were accepted in — or imposed upon — the United States, that fact would make the U.N. protocol equal to the Constitution . . . [Click for more]
August 11, 2006
A letter representing 78 Texas Ford dealers was sent to Ford’s Detroit headquarters earlier this summer, urging the company to “cease” advertising in homosexual publications. The letter acknowledged that a pro-family boycott is hurting their business.
Sent to Ford Motor Company CEO William Clay Ford and dated June 23, the letter was posted on the American Family Association’s website Aug. 9. AFA and other pro-family groups announced a boycott of Ford in March to protest the company’s advertising in homosexual magazines such as The Advocate and Out as well as Ford’s support of homosexual activist causes . . . [Click for more]
See also: BoycottFord.com
August 11, 2006
A priest in the Evangelical Episcopal Church who has served as a U.S. Navy chaplain is asking a military court to dismiss a series of complaints filed against him after he was caught praying in “Jesus” name.
A pretrial hearing is scheduled Monday for Chaplain Gordon James Klingenschmitt, who is accused of participating in a March 30 event with former Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore in front of the White House. He’s also accused of telling the congregation at the funeral of an accident victim the man had given his life to “Christ” . . . [Click for more]
Terror attacks on U.S.-bound flights thwarted
‘A number of aircraft’ targeted
British authorities thwarted a terrorist plot to blow up several aircraft mid-flight between the United States and Britain using explosives smuggled in hand luggage, officials said Thursday.
Britain’s Home Secretary John Reid said the alleged plot was “significant” and that terrorists aimed to “bring down a number of aircraft through mid-flight explosions, causing a considerable loss of life” . . . [Click for more]
Good article by Keyes, but Keyes is wrong and Santorum is right.
August 11, 2006
To people who know anything about me, it will come as no surprise that I respect and admire Sen. Rick Santorum. I support him in his bid for re-election, and I hope voters in Pennsylvania will do the same. I especially value his leadership on the many issues, such as abortion, that affect our moral vision, our moral strength as a nation.
In the past few days, several people have e-mailed me the transcript of Sen. Santorum’s speech at the National Press Club on July 20 . . . [Click for more]
August 12, 2006
Oliver Stone’s new film, “World Trade Center,” got off to a promising start at the box office on Wednesday, grossing better-than-expected receipts of $4.4 million in its first day, Paramount Pictures executives said on Thursday.
They added that if the pace continued, the film about the battle to save two policemen trapped under tons of rubble in the September 11 attacks could bring in more than $20 million through its opening weekend — a figure that would exceed expectations . . . [Click for more]
August 12, 2006
An Arizona Superior Court judge has ruled that a constitutional amendment protecting the traditional definition of marriage and banning marriage-like equivalents does not violate the constitution and may be included on the ballot for Arizona’s general election on November 7.
Judge Douglas Rayes of the Maricopa County Superior Court ruled Thursday against the opponents of the “Protect Marriage Arizona” initiative, or Proposition 107, rejecting their arguments that the measure violates a constitutional requirement that says a constitutional amendment must address only a single subject . . . [Click for more]