Archive for May, 2009

June is the Cruelest Month

Friday, May 29th, 2009

By Barry Rubin

April, wrote T.S. Eliott, is the cruelest month. But for hopes of peace, freedom, and moderation in the Middle East, June will play that role this year.
In Iran, Ahmadinejad backed by the spiritual guide is about to be reelected. In Lebanon, a regime backed by Iran and Syria is about to be installed.

It shouldn’t be that way. Remember the famous sign in the Clinton for President Headquarters back in 1992, which said, “It’s the economy, stupid,” as the main issue? Well, in the Middle East the equivalent sign would say, “It’s the Islamist revolutions, stupid.”

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Analysis: Damascus Gets What it Needs

Friday, May 29th, 2009

By Jonathan Spyer

In his letter to Congress announcing the renewal of US sanctions on Syria, President Barack Obama was specific regarding the reasons for his decision.
Syria, the President said, was “supporting terrorism, pursuing weapons of mass destruction and missile programs, and undermining US and international efforts with respect to the stabilization and reconstruction of Iraq.”

These three accusations are related to verifiable activity currently being undertaken by the Damascus regime. Syria’s activity in turn reflects the firmness of the regime’s strategic choice to align itself with the regional alliance led by Iran.

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Detailed Analysis of the Obama-Netanyahu Meeting/Part 1: Obama’s Statement

Friday, May 22nd, 2009

By Barry Rubin

So what did President Barack Obama say after the meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and what does it mean?

First, Obama went to great lengths to stress his belief in the special relationship between the two countries, knowing his fealty to it has been (understandably and rightfully) challenged. He consciously escalated it by calling it an “extraordinary relationship” adding “historical ties, emotional ties,” “only true democracy of the Middle East,” “a source of admiration and inspiration for the American people.” He then went on to say Israel’s security “is paramount” in his policy.

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In order to lie…

Friday, May 22nd, 2009

By Thomas Drewing

In order to lie one has to have some sense of what the truth actually is. Many liberals simply don’t have this capacity. Those that rise as high as politicians are the most self-deluded of all. As a firefighter/EMT, I see this all the time. People who are raised in environments where there is no reward for telling — or even remembering — what actually happened have a different mechanism that occupies the same part of their mind that truth does in a well-raised person.

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Jihad Comes to the Bronx

Thursday, May 21st, 2009

By Fern Sidman

In an elaborate sting operation, four African American Muslim men were arrested Wednesday night in New York City for attempting to bomb two synagogues in the Bronx and for conspiring to shoot down military planes at an Air National Guard base in Newburgh, NY. James Cromitie, David Williams, Onta Williams and Laguerre Payen were friends who had met while serving time in prison and it was there that they converted to Islam.

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Obama and Netanyahu Meet: What’s Next?

Sunday, May 17th, 2009

by Daniel Pipes*

The meeting on May 18 of two newly elected leaders, Barack Obama and Binyamin Netanyahu, raises a basic question about U.S.-Israel relations: Will this long-standing alliance survive its 62nd year?

Here are three reasons to expect a break from business-as-usual:

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Analysis: Iran-Syria Alliance in Harmony

Sunday, May 17th, 2009

By Jonathan Spyer

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran and President Bashar Assad of Syria reconfirmed the close alliance between their two countries during the Iranian president’s visit to Damascus this week.

Ahmadinejad’s visit came on the eve of the return of two senior US officials, Jeffrey Feltman and Daniel Shapiro, to Damascus. Their visit is part of ongoing US efforts at engagement with Syria. The tone struck by Ahmadinejad and Assad this week, however, did not suggest a mood for compromise.

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We Fooled You, We Intend to Destroy You. So Now What Will You Give Us?

Friday, May 15th, 2009

By Barry Rubin

When talking among themselves and in Arabic, Middle East radicals often “let their hair down,” to use the English-language idiom, meaning talk frankly about how they are fooling the dumb rubes in the West and what their real goals are.

I often come upon this — except, of course, in the Western media. But the latest example, translated by MEMRI is irresistible.

The speaker in this case is Fatah’s leader in Lebanon, Sultan Abu al-Einen, speaking on al-Quds television, April 6, 2009.

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Caught on Tape: The Middle East’s Culture of Cruelty

Friday, May 15th, 2009

by Daniel Pipes*

Some of the bravest and most distinguished analysts from the Middle East emphasize that region’s culture of cruelty. Kanan Makiya titled his 1994 book about Arabs Cruelty and Silence. Fouad Ajami writes about Beirut being “lost to a new reign of cruelty,” about Iraq’s “plunder and cruelty and sectarian animus,” and about the region’s “cruelty, waste, and confusion.”

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Afghanistan Shows Iran’s Stake in Regional Insecurity

Wednesday, May 13th, 2009

By Jonathan Spyer

A month ago, US President Barack Obama announced a new strategy to address the current crisis in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Obama’s plan to ‘disrupt, dismantle and defeat’ al-Qaida and the Taliban in ‘Afpak’ includes deployment of an additional 21,000 US troops in Afghanistan, and an increase in civilian officials to aid in developing the Afghan economy and governmental structures.

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Anti-CAIR Alert: CAIR Chairman Emeritus & Co-Founder Omar Ahmad Resigns

Wednesday, May 13th, 2009

by Anti-CAIR

CAIR Chairman Emeritus & Co-Founder Resigns:

Omar Ahmad, (Top Member Of The “Palestine Committee” Exposed On FBI Wiretaps Plotting To Support Hamas) Has Resigned from CAIR’s Board

http://news.yahoo.com/s/usnw/20090507/pl_usnw
/cair_co_founder_retires_from_board_after15_years_of_service

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Israel and the Iranian Bomb

Tuesday, May 12th, 2009

A briefing by Steven J. Rosen*

On April 27, four days before being cleared of all charges in the AIPAC case, Steven J. Rosen assessed the Iranian threat for the Middle East Forum in Philadelphia. Mr. Rosen is a visiting fellow at the Middle East Forum where he focuses on the Iranian threat. He is also director of the Forum’s Washington Project, for which he edits the Obama Mideast Monitor blog and the Policy Forum series of essays. After earning a Ph.D. from Syracuse, Dr. Rosen held faculty positions at several universities; he then served as the director of foreign policy issues for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee from 1982 to 2005.

He outlined how the threat first emerged and developed over the past fifteen years, as the West’s attention was directed elsewhere. Such negligence has led to the fact that Tehran currently poses the single greatest immediate danger to Israel, the Arab world, and possibly even the United States.

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Islamic Cleric to Pope: Let’s Unite and Kill the Jews Together!

Tuesday, May 12th, 2009

By Barry Rubin

It’s a pity that the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) chief Islamic judge Tayseer Rajab Tamimi will be criticized for rudeness rather than incitement to genocide. And the whole political context of Tamimi’s statements shouldn’t be missed either: he is an appointee of the PA. When he demands that Israel be wiped out either he’s speaking for his bosses or if not they should fire him. Of course, they won’t because in large part he is.

The Syrian regime was even more open with its antisemitism during the Pope’s Middle East trip, trying to foment Christian hatred of the Jews quite openly. Even Syria’s president, during a previous papal visit back in 2001, told the pontiff:

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Rally for Human Rights Takes on Radical Islam

Monday, May 4th, 2009

By Fern Sidman

Despite the pouring rain, over 300 concerned citizens representing a diverse group of political, religious, ethnic and racial groups convened in New York City’s Times Square on Sunday, May 3rd, to attend a rally sponsored by the Human Rights Coalition Against Radical Islam. The HRCARI is a grassroots global action movement that is dedicated to educating and mobilizing people of all backgrounds and persuasions to the inherent dangers of the burgeoning radical Islamic movement and to supporting freedom, democracy and tolerance.

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Here Comes Hillary; There Goes Lebanon

Sunday, May 3rd, 2009

By Barry Rubin

Suddenly, the United States has awoken to the fact that in one month Lebanon is likely to be taken over by a radical government and hijacked into the Iran-Syria alliance. Unfortunately, this apparently doesn’t mean it — or European states — are going to do anything about it.

In early June, the odds are — though one can still hope otherwise — that the parliamentary majority will be held by a coalition backed by Tehran and Damascus. Hizballah is not going to “take over” the country politically and that is a point no doubt which will be used by governments and media to prove that there’s no problem.

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