Monday, December 31, 2012

Atlas Exclusive: Robert Spencer: “Islamophobia”: Causes and Remedies


Atlas Exclusive: Robert Spencer: “Islamophobia”: Causes and Remedies

“Islamophobia”: Causes and Remedies
by Robert Spencer
Imagine a political analyst in 1940 who studied the low opinion that Americans had of Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany, and concluded that the problem was not the genocidal anti-Semitism, the international aggression, or the vile racist ideology, but bad press. Imagine further another analyst who pointed out that the bad press that Hitler and the Nazis got was a just result of their own words and actions, and that if they wanted to improve their public image in America, they should clean their own house and stop giving decent people so much cause to oppose them.

Finally, imagine that the second analyst, the one who ascribed the public’s low image of Nazis to the actions of Nazis themselves, was derided as a “hatemonger” and “bigot” who simply had an irrational hatred of Nazis and Germans in general. Would that be absurd? Of course. Outrageous? Undoubtedly. Morally inverted? Absolutely. Yet this little thought experiment encapsulates the prevailing sentiment regarding Muslims and “Islamophobia” today.

We saw this again Saturday, when it came to light that a deranged woman in New York City, Erica Menendez, pushed a Hindu man into the path of an oncoming subway train and murdered him because she thought he was a Muslim. “I pushed a Muslim off the train tracks,” she said, “because I hate Hindus and Muslims ever since 2001 when they put down the twin towers I’ve been beating them up.” Leftist pseudo-journalist propagandists such as Glenn Greenwald and Adam Serwer, along with Islamic supremacists such as Hussam Ayloush of the Hamas-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), began scratching their heads and wondering where the killer, in Greenwald’s words, “learned this level of hatred for Muslims.”

They had their answer ready, of course. The thuggish Nathan Lean, editor-in-chief of Aslan Media, answered Greenwald immediately by listing Pamela Geller and me, along with David Yerushalmi and several other counter-jihadists, as the cause of Menendez’s “hatred for Muslims.” Never mind that Menendez hadn’t mentioned any of us. Never mind that she was obviously unbalanced and irrational. The new Left fascists thought they had found another weapon they could use to try to discredit and shut down resistance to the global jihad and Islamic supremacism, and they rode it for all it was worth.

But the whole episode only highlighted the larger question. The words of a clearly insane murderess can be discounted, but insofar as sane and non-murderous Americans have a dim view of Islam and Muslims, what is the cause of that? Is it the “Islamophobic” writings of people like Pamela Geller and me? Or could it be that anti-Muslim bigotry, that is, any that may really exist, is a reaction to people like Amine Mohamed El-Khalifi, the would-be jihad/martyrdom suicide bomber at the U.S. Capitol; Naser Abdo, the would-be second Fort Hood jihad mass murderer; Khalid Aldawsari, the would-be jihad mass murderer in Lubbock, Texas; Muhammad Hussain, the would-be jihad bomber in Baltimore; Mohamed Mohamud, the would-be jihad bomber in Portland; Faisal Shahzad, the would-be Times Square jihad mass-murderer; Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad, the Arkansas military recruiting station jihad murderer; Naveed Haq, the jihad mass murderer at the Jewish Community Center in Seattle; Mohammed Reza Taheri-Azar, the would-be jihad mass murderer in Chapel Hill, North Carolina; Ahmed Ferhani and Mohamed Mamdouh, who hatched a jihad plot to blow up a Manhattan synagogue; Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the would-be Christmas airplane jihad bomber; or the many others like them who have plotted and/or committed mass murder in the name of Islam and are motivated by its texts and teachings, all in the U.S. in the last few years?
Any bigotry and victimization of innocent people is to be unequivocally condemned and opposed. The question here, however, is whether “hatred of Muslims” is really caused by bad press, and by the “hatemongers” responsible for that bad press, or whether that hatred is a reaction to the violent actions that all too many Muslims have undertaken recently in the name of Islam. The further question is what can be done to end it. Is the remedy to stop all honest reporting about jihad violence and Islamic supremacism, and the Muslim texts that jihadis use to justify both? Or is it for genuinely peaceful Muslims to take decisive action against that jihad and Islamic supremacism?

If Muslim spokesmen in the U.S. like Hamas-linked CAIR’s Ayloush and others really want to end “anti-Muslim bigotry,” rather than use it as a tool to destroy the freedom of speech and bring Sharia blasphemy laws to the West, they need to stand against Muslims like the ones I have just listed, rather than against those non-Muslims who are trying to resist them, when “anti-Muslim bigotry” breaks out. That they do not do so shows up the hypocrisy of their entire enterprise. For this is not a difficult point to grasp. That it so persistently eludes Leftist and Islamic supremacist spokesmen who otherwise seem to display a reasonable level of intelligence indicates that a very different agenda is playing out – one that bodes ill for all free people.

Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and author of the New York Times bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His latest book is Did Muhammad Exist?.

"Israel and the Palestinians" :: A briefing by Steven J. Rosen

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Israel and the Palestinians

A briefing by Steven J. Rosen
December 17, 2012
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Audio Recording
Steven J. Rosen, director of the Middle East Forum's Washington Project and former foreign-policy director at AIPAC, addressed the Middle East Forum on December 17, 2012, via conference call. Steven Rosen and MEF President Daniel Pipes recently met with Israeli officials to discuss strategy and policy in the wake of Israel's Operation Pillar of Defense in Gaza and the Palestinian Authority's (PA's) upgrade to a non-member observer state by the UN General Assembly. Mr. Rosen shared some insights and conclusions of these discussions.
Hamas in Gaza:
·        Israel's deterrence has been partially restored following the Gaza fighting. Israeli national security doctrine espouses a clear preference for adversaries that exercise strong central control over their constituents and can therefore be held accountable for hostile behavior emanating from these territories. This now appears to be the case with Hamas as evidenced inter alia by its swift enforcement of quiet after the ceasefire agreement.
·        Future Israeli efforts to prevent Hamas from rearming are likely to focus on enlisting Egypt, which has a vested interest to avert another conflagration in Gaza. Unlike President Mubarak who turned a blind eye to Sinai weapons smuggling in the hope of driving Israel to weaken Hamas for him, President Morsi cannot afford such an eventuality for the simple reason that Hamas is the Muslim Brotherhood's Palestinian offshoot.
The UN vote and the Palestinian Authority:
·        The PA's move was a transparent attempt to rally the international community behind an imposed, rather than negotiated, solution. By codifying the 1967 borders in a UN resolution the PA has effectively predetermined the outcome of future negotiations.
·        A more malevolent goal of the initiative is to enable the PA to bring criminal charges against Israeli military personnel and state officials at the International Criminal Court (ICC), a body comprised of judges from non-aligned countries largely hostile to the Jewish state. This option, however, has some clear limitations:
    • Israeli military operations are defensive and governed by the principle of proportionality;
    • The ICC is restricted by the principle of complementarity (i.e., complementary to national criminal jurisdictions), and given Israel's position as the most independent judiciary in the Middle East it has no need to act in lieu of its courts;
    • Israel could bring counter claims of war crimes against the PA and Hamas.
·        There is one possible ICC action of concern to Israel: litigation concerning "settlements." Were the ICC to rule that the Fourth Geneva Convention applied to the disputed territories, thus making them legally "occupied," this would enable the prosecution of current and past members of government involved in the establishment of settlements for war crimes.
·        The US, like Israel, has not recognized ICC jurisdiction because of the likelihood of politically motivated prosecutions. The ICC could just as easily be used to bring cases against U.S. soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as Predator drone counter-terrorism strikes. Yet although it is in America's self-interest to avoid submitting to ICC rulings, the Obama administration has softened Washington's opposition to the ICC to a policy of re-engagement.
Summary account by Marilyn Stern, Associate Fellow with the Middle East Forum.
Related Topics:  Arab-Israel conflict & diplomacy, Palestinians  |  Steven J. Rosen This text may be reposted or forwarded so long as it is presented as an integral whole with complete AND ACCURATE information provided about its author, date, place of publication, and original URL.

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Eye on Iran: Huawei Partner Offered Embargoed HP Gear to Iran

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"A major Iranian partner of Huawei Technologies offered to sell at least 1.3 million euros worth of embargoed Hewlett-Packard computer equipment to Iran's largest mobile-phone operator in late 2010, documents show. China's Huawei, the world's second largest telecommunications equipment maker, says neither it nor its partner, a private company registered in Hong Kong, ultimately provided the HP products to the telecom, Mobile Telecommunication Co of Iran, known as MCI. Nevertheless, the incident provides new evidence of how Chinese companies have been willing to help Iran evade trade sanctions. The proposed deal also raises new questions about Shenzhen-based Huawei, which recently was criticized by the U.S. House Intelligence Committee for failing to 'provide evidence to support its claims that it complies with all international sanctions or U.S. export laws.' At least 13 pages of the proposal to MCI, which involved expanding its subscriber billing system, were marked 'Huawei confidential' and carried the company's logo, according to documents seen by Reuters. In a statement to Reuters, Huawei called it a 'bidding document' and said one of its 'major local partners,' Skycom Tech Co Ltd, had submitted it to MCI."

JPost: "There have been signs over the past year and particularly over the past weeks, that Iran has an interest in reaching a resolution over its nuclear program, the US Department of the Treasury top sanctions official said Monday. 'Pressure is working' David Cohen, undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence at the US Department of the Treasury, said in an interview with Army Radio. However, he added that the Iranian regime must be aware that 'the window' to reach a solution diplomatically will not remain open forever. 'We have demonstrated to Iran that continued refusal to address issues will only result in increasing pressure,' Cohen asserted. He stressed that 2012 was a very difficult year for the Islamic Republic, noting that oil exports dropped by 50%, along with the value of the Iranian Rial."

Bloomberg: "Iraq jumped two places to No. 2 in OPEC's rankings this year, cementing its position among the world's leading oil producers. Neighboring Iran dropped three spots to fifth as international sanctions took hold. Second only to Saudi Arabia within the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, Iraq's output rose by 24 percent this year as the BP Plc-led Rumaila field increased supply. Iranian production shrank by the same percentage to the lowest level since 1988, data compiled by Bloomberg show, and its exports will continue to drop into 2013, according to the International Energy Agency... Iraq's crude production averaged 3.35 million barrels a day last month, Bloomberg data show. Iran's daily output slumped to 2.7 million, less than Venezuela and Kuwait, OPEC's third- and fourth-largest producers, respectively."
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Nuclear Program

AP: "Iran's navy said Monday it test-fired a range of weapons during ongoing maneuvers near the Strait of Hormuz, the passageway for one-fifth of the world's oil supply. IRNA quoted Adm. Amir Rastgari, spokesman for the exercise, as saying the Iranian-made air defense system Raad, or Thunder, was among the weapons tested, along with various torpedoes and underwater and surface-to-surface rockets as well as anti-ship missiles. The Islamic Republic said it also deployed domestically-made hovercraft during the operation. The Raad system was on show during a military parade in Tehran in September for the first time. Iran says is more advanced than its Russian predecessor and is designed to confront fighter jets, cruise missiles, smart bombs, helicopters and drones. Iran said the system fires missiles with a range of 50 kilometers (30 miles), capable of hitting targets at 22,000 meters (75,000 feet)."


AFP: "President Barack Obama enacted a law to counter Iran's alleged influence in Latin America, through a new diplomatic and political strategy to be designed by the State Department. The Countering Iran in the Western Hemisphere Act, passed by lawmakers earlier this year, calls for the State Department to develop a strategy within 180 days to 'address Iran's growing hostile presence and activity' in the region. Although the strategy is confidential and only accessible to lawmakers, it must contain a public summary. The text also calls on the Department of Homeland Security to bolster surveillance at US borders with Canada and Mexico to 'prevent operatives from Iran, the IRGC (Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps), its Quds Force, Hezbollah or any other terrorist organization from entering the United States.' And within Latin American countries, the text provides for a multiagency action plan to provide security in those countries, along with a 'counterterrorism and counter-radicalization plan' to isolate Iran and its allies."

Human Rights

AFP: "Iran on Saturday hanged an Afghan drug trafficker and four Iranians, three of them convicted of rape, local media reported. The 27-year-old Afghan from Herat, identified only by his initials MM, was sent to the gallows in the northern city of Damghan after being convicted of selling around two kilos (four pounds) of crack cocaine. Three Iranian men convicted of rape and another of smuggling heroin and opium, were hanged in the central city of Yazd."

Opinion & Analysis

UANI Advisory Board Member Walter Russell Mead in The American Interest: "Iranian authorities have realized that their longtime ally in Syria is on the way out and have held talks with members of the opposition about a transitional regime, reports the Los Angeles Times. From the piece (with excellent reporting from Ramin Mostaghim and Alexandra Sandels) it appears that Iran's government is still not willing to break with Assad, but is increasingly and reluctantly coming to conclude that efforts to save him are doomed. For those concerned about a possible US-Iranian military conflict - which is to say everyone in the world who cares about war, peace and the price of oil and gas - this is an important moment of truth. The loss of its key ally in Syria will bring dramatic changes to Iran's position. Will the ruling mullahs and their allies decide that it's time to call off the confrontation before Tehran is even weaker and more isolated, or will they double down on nukes and a hard line in the belief that nothing else can save them? One way or another, the course of the war in Syria will help determine whether the US finds itself in yet another Middle East war, and watching the Iranians process what looks like the downward spiral in Assad's fortunes offers clues as to how the larger drama will go. We aren't at the decision point yet. At this point the Iranians don't seem to have completely accepted that their ally cannot survive and the debate in Tehran over Syria policy isn't over. The government looks to be floundering around hoping to save something out of the wreckage. Experts and officials talk about preserving the 'structure of the Syrian state,' presumably hoping for Assadism without Assad: an Alawite dominated state structure that would continue to align with Iran while offering restive Sunnis more economic and political space. The current situation on the ground makes it unlikely that the Sunni opposition would settle for this now, but if the government's military situation stabilizes, Tehran seems to hope that international pressures for a negotiated, compromise solution would grow. This appears to match roughly with Russia's current vision for the war. Like Tehran, Moscow does not want to see a revolutionary Syria join a Sunni bloc in the Middle East and fears the export of Sunni jihadis into its own volatile Caucasus region. And like Iran, Russia has long term investments in the Assad regime, with decades of close economic, military and human ties. Russia sees itself as the protector of Syria's Orthodox Christians as Iran wants to protect the Alawites; both minorities could face tough times under a new revenge-minded Sunni regime. The fall of the Assad regime would be a blow to both countries, but Iran has much more at stake. As we've noted in past posts, Syria is crucial to Iran's grand design in the Middle East; it is the keystone in the arch of Shiite states Iran has sought to build across the Fertile Crescent from Iraq through Lebanon. It was also the means by which Iran was able to support Hezbollah in Lebanon and construct an anti-Israel alliance with Hamas that helped offset Iran's deep disadvantages on the Arab street, making it look less like a 'Persian' and 'heretical' anti-Arab power and more like a leader of global Islam in the fight against the west. The growing likelihood that decades of building this position will end in catastrophe represents the greatest threat to the Iranian regime since its failure in the Iran-Iraq war. Already Hamas has rejected Syria and distanced itself from Iran; Hezbollah is singing small and thinking more about protecting its suddenly vulnerable position in Lebanon than about joining a regional Shiite surge."

Eye on Iran is a periodic news summary from United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) a program of the American Coalition Against Nuclear Iran, Inc., a tax-exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Eye on Iran is not intended as a comprehensive media clips summary but rather a selection of media elements with discreet analysis in a PDA friendly format. For more information please email

United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) is a non-partisan, broad-based coalition that is united in a commitment to prevent Iran from fulfilling its ambition to become a regional super-power possessing nuclear weapons.  UANI is an issue-based coalition in which each coalition member will have its own interests as well as the collective goal of advancing an Iran free of nuclear weapons.

The Latest from National Terror Alert Response Center

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Posted: 30 Dec 2012 03:23 PM PST
A December 1998 Iranian military journal published an article titled “Electronics to Determine Fate of Future Wars,” and it detailed how an electromagnetic pulse, or EMP, attack on the electronic infrastructure of the United States caused by the detonation of a nuclear bomb over the U.S. would be crippling. “Once you confuse the enemy communication [...]
This story comes to us via Homeland Security - National Terror Alert. National Terror Alert is America's trusted source for homeland security news and information.

Understand EMP threat? U.S. enemies do
Posted: 30 Dec 2012 02:32 PM PST
A record number of guns, more than 1,500, have been found by airport security screeners this year, and 85 percent have been loaded, the Transportation Security Administration reports. As of last Friday, the TSA had found 1,527, of which 1,295 were loaded, NBC News says. That’s the most since the agency was created after the [...]
This story comes to us via Homeland Security - National Terror Alert. National Terror Alert is America's trusted source for homeland security news and information.

TSA nabs grenade, guns, ammo from carry-on luggage