Archive for April, 2008

Making Mischief

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

by Jonathan Spyer

Whatever the Israelis offer, Syria won’t give up its alliance with Iran, which allows it to punch above its weight in the region.

With attention in the Middle East focusing on the US congressional hearings regarding a possible Syrian nuclear programme, the Syrian newspaper al-Watan made a surprising announcement last Wednesday. According to the newspaper, Israel, via Turkish channels, had in the previous 24 hours expressed its willingness to exchange the entirety of the Golan Heights area for peace with Syria.

(more…)


Turkey’s Uncertain Future

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

by Michael Rubin*

The legal case against the AKP is an affirmation of democracy rather than an assault upon it. Democracy rests upon the rule of law and constitutionalism. Neither plurality support nor a majority in parliament should place any politician or party above the law.

The AKP deserves credit for the economic growth that has occurred under its stewardship and for supporting Turkey’s accession into the European Union. There is no doubt that the AKP has revolutionized Turkish politics. In the 2002 election, it trounced the more established parties by out-campaigning them. The AKP has earned its reputation for serving its constituents.

(more…)


Egypt: Between The Devil and The Deep Blue Sea

Tuesday, April 29th, 2008

By Barry Rubin

Egyptian President Husni Mubarak is 80. After over a quarter-century in office he is ready for more. But how much longer will his rule–or regime–continue?

And under him, Egypt has not done so badly, or has it?

Well that depends. He has kept Egypt stable and out of war, no mean feat, and even delivered a bit of economic development, though recently there have been bread riots. But there has been no big improvement.

(more…)


Are H-1Bs the Best and Brightest? New Report Shows That Most Are Not

Monday, April 28th, 2008

WASHINGTON (April 2008) — A new report from the Center for Immigration Studies demonstrates that most H-1Bs are ordinary people doing ordinary work, not the geniuses claimed by industry lobbyists.

Those arguing for an increase in the number of H-1B visas (ostensibly temporary visas for ‘specialty occupations,’ many of them in the computer industry) claim that continued U.S. leadership in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics hinges on our ability to import the world’s best engineers and scientists. But this new data analysis shows that the vast majority of H-1B workers — including those at most major tech firms — are not the innovators industry portrays them to be.

(more…)


CAIR Slimes Joe Farah: Time To Take The Gloves Off?

Sunday, April 27th, 2008

By Andrew Whitehead

Joseph Farah is irate. And rightly so.

The highly respected founder, editor, and CEO of WorldNetDaily was blatantly slandered last week by CAIR’s communication director, and terrorist supporter, Ibrahim Hooper.

The Daily News had a column that referred to a new book from WND Books called “Why We Left Islam: Former Muslims Speak Out.”

Looking for a quote from a Muslim about the book, the columnists at the Daily News went to CAIR, specifically; Ibrahim Hooper:

(more…)


The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine

Wednesday, April 23rd, 2008

by Ilan Pappé
Oneworld Publications, 2006. 256 pp. $27.50

Book review by Seth J. Frantzman*

Flunking History

Among many Israeli academics and Western revisionists, it has become fashionable to examine Israel’s war of independence from an Arab perspective in which Jews were the aggressors and Arabs the victims.[1] This trend began in 1989 with works by Ben-Gurion University professor Benny Morris[2] and Oxford University professor Avi Shlaim,[3] and developed further with the writings of the late Hebrew University anthropologist Baruch Kimmerling,[4] Neve Gordon[5] at Ben-Gurion University, and Meron Benvenisti,[6] a political scientist who served as deputy mayor of Jerusalem between 1971 and 1978.

(more…)


Duplicity of the Occupied Lands Canard

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2008

by Steven Shamrak

There are many lands around the world that have been occupied not so long ago by other countries. Many of them are still subjugated to the rule of an occupying power. They were conquered during offensive or defensive wars, throughout the process of establishment of statehood or as a part of colonial and imperial policy. The following is a far from complete list of the currently occupied lands:

(more…)


CAIR: Non-Profit?

Monday, April 21st, 2008

By Andrew Whitehead

In an article carried by MyrtleBeachOnline.com, Rep. Sue Myrick says she wants America to “wake up” and do something about terrorism. To that end, Rep. Myrick has introduced a ten-point plan apparently designed to both alert Americans to the threat of terrorism and also lay out a blue-print for taking action now to hopefully prevent incidents in future.

Among Myrick’s points (“Wake Up America”) is a call for examining the tax exempt status of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) a Washington, D.C. based front group that supports Islamist terrorism and Islamist terrorists in North America.

(more…)


Private Accommodations for Islam

Sunday, April 20th, 2008

by R. John Matthies*

When is it appropriate to critique the policies of private enterprise? Private institutions are clearly permitted to carry out their business in a manner appropriate to their market, so long as they operate within the boundaries of the law. However, these institutions – commercial, educational, or the media – also play a major societal role, and hence carry great responsibility. For this reason, the practice of criticizing these institutions is an established tradition, as illustrated by book reviews, theater criticism, Hollywood gossip columns, sports talk, consumer reports, and others. Acknowledging that the critique of private institutions is different from the sort directed at government, we engage private sector entities in consideration of the influence they peddle and (indirect) power they wield.

(more…)


A Democratic Islam?

Saturday, April 19th, 2008

by Daniel Pipes*

There’s an impression that Muslims suffer disproportionately from the rule of dictators, tyrants, unelected presidents, kings, emirs, and various other strongmen — and it’s accurate. A careful analysis by Frederic L. Pryor of Swarthmore College in the Middle East Quarterly (“Are Muslim Countries Less Democratic?“) concludes that “In all but the poorest countries, Islam is associated with fewer political rights.”

The fact that majority-Muslim countries are less democratic makes it tempting to conclude that the religion of Islam, their common factor, is itself incompatible with democracy.

(more…)


CAIR: Defending Al-Arian

Friday, April 18th, 2008

By Andrew Whitehead

Omer Subhani, the communications director for the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) South Florida, authors a blog. On April 16, he wrote that he had “serious doubts” about Sami Al-Arian, the disgraced former college professor and Islamist terrorist. Read his post here.

In his blog entry, Subhani attempts to come across as an impartial observer of the trial who was swayed by the outcome of the case. If his claim weren’t so biased, it’d be funny. But when it comes to CAIR and radical Islam, nobody is laughing.

(more…)


Washington Post Chides Carter for Hamas Meeting

Thursday, April 17th, 2008

By Andrew L. Jaffee

In an excellent editorial published today, the Washington Post’s op-ed staff joined Barack Obama in harshly criticizing former President Jimmy Carter for meeting with Hamas terrorists, and for advocating that “someone” engage in diplomacy with a group sworn to the destruction of Israel:

… [Hamas foreign minister] Mr. Zahar lauds Mr. Carter for the “welcome tonic” of saying that no peace process can succeed “unless we are sitting at the negotiating table and without any preconditions.” Yet Mr. Zahar has his own preconditions: Before any peace process can “take even its first tiny step,” he says, Israel must withdraw to the 1967 borders and evacuate Jerusalem while preparing for the “return of millions of refugees.” In fact, as Mr. Zahar makes clear, Hamas is not at all interested in a negotiated peace with the Jewish state, whose existence it refuses to accept: “Our fight to redress the material crimes of 1948 is scarcely begun,” he concludes. …

(more…)


Hamas & Carter: Give Obama Credit Where Credit Is Due

Thursday, April 17th, 2008

By Andrew L. Jaffee

I have not been an Obama supporter — quite the contrary — but I applaud his statements today:

Sen. Barack Obama on Wednesday criticized former President Carter for meeting with leaders of the Islamic terrorist group Hamas as he tried to reassure Jewish voters that his candidacy isn’t a threat to them or U.S. support for Israel.

Obama told the group he had a “fundamental disagreement” with Carter, who was rebuffed by Israeli leaders during a peace mission to the Middle East this week.

“We must not negotiate with a terrorist group intent on Israel’s destruction,” Obama said. “We should only sit down with Hamas if they renounce terrorism, recognize Israel’s right to exist, and abide by past agreements.”

(more…)


Islam and the Evolution of Europe’s Far Right

Wednesday, April 16th, 2008

by R. John Matthies*

What is to account for the success of Europe’s Far Right? The attention the news media have devoted to the story of Islam in Europe has never been greater. And displeasure over concessions granted to Europe’s Muslims, fear and loathing of Shari‘a (Islamic) law — and fears that Europe, in the rush to embrace the Other, may lose herself — appear to be driving the continent’s electoral agenda. These concerns have sprung from items as ridiculous as Fortis Bank’s decision to do away with pig mascot Knorbert (for fear of offending Muslims) to the Archbishop of Canterbury’s declaration that adoption of elements of Shari‘a law in the UK “seems unavoidable” — and would, in fact, be a great help to maintain social cohesion. In any case, it appears that a growing number are sufficiently discouraged by the imposition of the multicultural gag to take Europe’s latest war of religion to the voting booth. It is also the case, for many, that the persons who best speak to the continent’s concerns are not those moderate (or secular) Muslims who talk of assimilation, but the leading lights of Europe’s Far Right — and the growing host of Muslim-baiters who sit in public office.

(more…)


Turkey’s Turning Point: Could there be an Islamic Revolution in Turkey?

Wednesday, April 16th, 2008

by Michael Rubin*

Few U.S. policymakers have heard of Fethullah Gülen, perhaps Turkey’s most prominent theologian and political thinker. Self-exiled for more than a decade, Gülen lives a reclusive life outside Philadelphia, Pa. Within months, however, he may be as much a household a name in the United States as is Ayatollah Khomeini, a man who was as obscure to most Americans up until his triumphant return to Iran almost 30 years ago.

(more…)