Friday, April 28, 2017
   

 

American Betrayal

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"This explosive book is a long-needed answer to court histories that continue to obscure key facts about our backstage war with Moscow. Must-reading for serious students of security issues and Cold War deceptions, both foreign and domestic."

-- M. Stanton Evans, author of Stalin's Secret Agents and Blacklisted by History: The Untold Story of Senator Joe McCarthy and His Fight Against America's Enemies

"It is not simply a good book about history. It is one of those books which makes history. ... "

-- Vladimir Bukovsky, author of To Build a Castle and co-founder of the Soviet dissident movement, and Pavel Stroilov, author of Behind the Desert Storm.

"I have read it, and agree wholeheartedly."

-- Angelo Codevilla, Professor Emeritus of International Relations at Boston Unversity, and fellow of the Claremont Institute. 

"A brilliantly researched and argued book."

-- Edward Jay Epstein, author of Deception: The Invisible War between the KGB and the CIA, The Annals 0f Unsolved Crime 

"American Betrayal is absolutely required reading. Essential. You're sleepwalking without it."

-- Chris Farrell, director of investigations research, Judicial Watch

"As Diana West writes in her remarkable book, American Betrayal, we have `new totalitarians who look to Mecca instead of Moscow.' "

-- Newt Gingrich, former Speaker of the House of Representatives 

"I've been, quite frankly, mesmerized by Diana West and her new book American Betrayal. If you get it (a) you won't put it down, and (b) you'll be flipping back to the notes section because every paragraph your hair's going to be on fire."  

-- Stephen K. Bannon, Breitbart News Radio

"Every once in a while, something happens that turns a whole structure of preconceived ideas upside down, shattering tales and narratives long taken for granted, destroying prejudice, clearing space for new understanding to grow. Diana West's latest book, American Betrayal, is such an event."

 -- Henrik Raeder Clausen, Europe News

No book has ever frightened me as much as American Betrayal. ... [West] patiently builds a story outlining a network of subversion so bizarrely immense that to write it down will seem too fantastic to anyone without the book’s detailed breadth and depth. It all adds up to a story so disturbing that it has changed my attitude to almost everything I think about how the world actually is. ... By the time you put the book down, you have a very different view of America’s war aims and strategies. The core question is, did the USA follow a strategy that served its own best interests, or Stalin’s? And it’s not that it was Stalin’s that is so compelling, since you knew that had to be the answer, but the evidence in detail that West provides that makes this a book you cannot ignore. 

-- Steven Kates, RMIT (Australia) Associate Professor of Economics, Quadrant

Her task is ambitious; her sweep of crucial but too-little-known facts of history is impressive; and her arguments are eloquent and witty. ... American Betrayal is one of those books that will change the way many of us see the world.

-- Susan Freis Falknor, Blue Ridge Forum

“What Diana West has done is to dynamite her way through several miles of bedrock. On the other side of the tunnel there is a vista of a new past. Of course folks are baffled. Few people have the capacity to take this in. Her book is among the most well documented I have ever read. It is written in an unusual style viewed from the perspective of the historian—but it probably couldn’t have been done any other way.”

-- Lars Hedegaard, historian, editor, Dispatch International

"Diana West's new book rewrites WWII and Cold War history not by disclosing secrets, but by illuminating facts that have been hidden in plain sight for decades. Furthermore, she integrates intelligence and political history in ways never done before."

-- Jeffrey Norwitz, former professor of counterterrorism, Naval War College

Although I know [Christopher] Andrew well, and have met [Oleg] Gordievsky twice, I now doubt their characterization of Hopkins -- also embraced by Radosh and the scholarly community. I now support West's conclusions after rereading KGB: The Inside Story account 23 years later [relevant passages cited in American Betrayal]. It does not ring true that Hopkins was an innocent dupe dedicated solely to defeating the Nazis. Hopkins comes over in history as crafty, secretive and no one's fool, hardly the personality traits of a naïve fellow traveler. And his fingerprints are on the large majority of pro-Soviet policies implemented by the Roosevelt administration. West deserves respect for cutting through the dross that obscures the evidence about Hopkins, and for screaming from the rooftops that the U.S. was the victim of a successful Soviet intelligence operation.

-- Bernie Reeves, founder of The Raleigh Spy Conference, American Thinker

Diana West’s American Betrayal — a remarkable, novel-like work of sorely needed historical re-analysis — is punctuated by the Cassandra-like quality of “multi-temporal” awareness. ... But West, although passionate and direct, is able to convey her profoundly disturbing, multi-temporal narrative with cool brilliance, conjoining meticulous research, innovative assessment, evocative prose, and wit.

-- Andrew G. Bostom, PJ Media

Do not be dissuaded by the controversy that has erupted around this book which, if you insist on complete accuracy, would be characterized as a disinformation campaign.

-- Jed Babbin, The American Spectator

The most important anti-Communist book of our time. ... Mrs. West is one of the most important writers on the strategic and moral consequences of Communist penetration of the U.S. Government.

-- J.R. Nyquist, contributor, And Reality Be Damned ... What Media Didn't Tell You about the End of the Cold War and the Fall of Communism in Europe

The polemics against your Betrayal have a familiar smell: The masters of the guild get angry when someone less worthy than they are ventures into the orchard in which only they are privileged to harvest. The harvest the outsider brought in, they ritually burn.

-- Hans Jansen, former professor of Islamic Thought, University of Utrecht 

West's lesson to Americans: Reality can't be redacted, buried, fabricated, falsified, or omitted. Her book is eloquent proof of it.

-- Edward Cline, Family Security Matters

In American Betrayal, Ms. West's well-established reputation for attacking "sacred cows" remains intact. The resulting beneficiaries are the readers, especially those who can deal with the truth.

-- Wes Vernon, Renew America

After reading American Betrayal and much of the vituperation generated by neoconservative "consensus" historians, I conclude that we cannot ignore what West has demonstrated through evidence and cogent argument.

-- John Dale Dunn, M.D., J.D., Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons

Enlightening. I give American Betrayal five stars only because it is not possible to give it six.

-- John Dietrich, formerly of the Defense Intelligence Agency and author of The Morgenthau Plan: Soviet Influence on American Postwar Policy.

If you're looking for something to read, this is the most dazzling, mind-warping book I have read in a long time. It has been criticized by the folks at Front Page, but they don't quite get what Ms. West has set out to do and accomplished. I have a whole library of books on communism, but -- "Witness" excepted -- this may be the best.

-- Jack Cashill, author of Deconstructing Obama: The Lives, Loves and Letters of America's First Postmodern President and First Strike: TWA Flight 800 and the Attack on America

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Saudi religious authorities decided it was a necessity to break Islamic law to permit infidel troops to defend "the Kingdom," and we call Saudi Arabia an ally. Osama bin Laden didn't agree it was a necessity, and declared war on America. But they all thought the Islamic law against infidels was swell.

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Ruthfully Yours highlights an important article by Mark Durie discussing the Islamic "Law of Necsessity." In a nutshell, this law is an escape hatch for Muslims from any Islamic law that impractically or disadvantageously conflicts with circumstances. Such circumstances are the subject of much Islamic debate. In fact, it's probably true that the single most significant internal Islamic dispute is over what specific circumstances should trigger "law of necessity"...

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Over at PJM, Roger Kimball considers the increasingly apparent fact that even "many ostensibly conservative organs are shying away" from covering the Huma Abedin story, and declares himself perplexed. He goes on to  cite the Washington Examiner's decision to spike my recent syndicated column that mentioned Abedin.

Roger writes:

In a disturbing column yesterday, West details the story of the Washington Examiner’s spiking a column she wrote arguing that Bachmann and her colleagues were right to call on the Inspectors General to investigate Huama Abedin and the influence of the Muslim Brotherhood on US government policy.

Why did the Examiner spike the column? Because, David Freddoso, the editor said, “there is no hint of proof that [Abedin] has done anything improper.”

Well isn’t that nice. But when it comes to distributing government security clearances, you don’t have to...

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I received an email from a reader, who writes:

I read your article on WND today.  Please explain your position in light of the fact it has been conclusively established that Zullo was wrong about the 1961 codes and neither he nor Corsi have retracted their statements about it despite that proof.

What proof? I asked in response. It so happens the column in question doesn't address the Cold Case Posse's discussion of the 1961 codes from its recent press conference because I found myself transfixed by the tales of stone-walling investigators encountered on its trip to Hawaii, as recounted by lead investigator Mike Zullo. In a separate post,...

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News flash: The Washingon Examiner spiked my syndicated column on the Muslim Brotherhood and why five House Republicans -- Reps. Michele Bachmann, Trent Franks, Louie Gohmert, Tom Rooney and Lynn Westermoreland -- were correct to call on Inspectors General to investigate MB influence on US government policy-making. And therein lies a tale.

If the newspaper's online search function is accurate, it is even more perplexing to note that the Examiner hasn't run a single news story on the media-politics feeding frenzy, led by Sen. John McCain, directed at Rep. Michele Bachmann for raising questions about strong indications of Muslim Brotherhood penetration of the Washington policy-making chain. The geyser of Left-cum-GOP-Establishment hysteria arose from Bachmann et al pointing out in a letter to the State Department IG that Huma Abedin, a top advisor of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, has close family members involved in MB-associated groups and movements, which are dedicated to the destruction of the West. Indeed, it was on the mention of Huma Abedin that the Examiner told me the paper turned down my column (full column reprinted below). 

...

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This week's verboten syndicated column looks at how Hawaiian islanders greeted the Cold Case Posse. Hint: It wasn't like in the picture.

I’m sorry to report that the substantive findings of the latest press conference held by Maricopa County, Ariz., Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s Cold Case Posse will not be appearing on Fox, on CNN or in the Washington Post. They will not be appearing in the media, period. I guess the nation’s press corps is too busy submitting its work to Obama and Romney campaign officials for “quote approval” – as the New York Times recently confessed in an outbreak of candor – to report on anything.

...

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President Obama and Gov. Linda Lingle (R-HI) at the White House, 2009

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A reader writes in about this week's syndicated column (which, as with any coverage of Sheriff Arpaio's ongoing investigation of forgery in the creation of  President Obama's online birth certificate, or the numerous ballot challenges to Obama's eligibility in the states, will be auto-spiked at Townhall.com, the Washington Examiner, and who knows where else):

As a conservative, I'm sympathetic to your POV, but I found your article unconvincing.  Compare this with the fake Texas Air National Guard record supposedly for George Bush.  That record was printed in the default font for Microsoft Word -- a font that didn't exist at...

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Olympic London: David Cameron's "open, diverse and tolerant" city. One billion Euros are expected to be spent for games "security."  Call it what it is: an anti-jihad force.

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More Dhimmi Excellence even before the London Games begin!

From the Independent (with thanks to Ruthfully Yours):

David Cameron has refused to back calls for a minute's silence during the Olympics' opening ceremony to commemorate 11 athletes murdered in a terror attack at the Munich Games 40 years ago.



The Prime Minister said it was important to remember what happened in 1972, but that planned memorial events were the proper way to do that.

His comments came after the widows of two Israeli athletes who were killed in the attack pleaded with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to allow a minute's silence during Friday's opening ceremony.

Ankie Spitzer and Ilana Romano, whose husbands Andrei Spitzer and Yosef Romano were among 11 athletes killed in the attack...

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The Israeli Olympic team, Munich 1972

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The stilted conversation the world is having over the IOC refusal to permit a minute of silence at the opening of the 2012 London Olympic to mark the Munich massacre 40 years ago is a turning point in the Islamization of the international arena.

As the Chicago Tribune reports:

The idea of a remembrance has gained more traction this year than ever before.   The White House is for it.  The U.S. House and Senate have supported it in resolutions.  So have the Canadian and German parliaments, the German foreign minister and 30 German athletes. And the government...

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Germany's DPA reports:

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan -- Twenty Afghan guards for the NATO-led Australian forces defected to the Taliban after a dispute with the soldiers in southern Afghanistan, police said Wednesday.

"The Australian soldiers beat the Afghan guards after some verbal disputes in a military camp in Charchino district of Uruzgan province," district police chief Wali Dad said.

Is that what happened, Chief?

The angry guards set the security towers on fire and defected to the Taliban, taking weapons and ammunition, he said.

The defection occurred two days after a police chief and 12 of his men took weapons and joined the Taliban in western Farah province.





White House official reading MSM

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Joseph Farah draws our attention to a New York Times story of July 16, which broke, as he notes, without rippling the surface of public discourse. It is a bombshell, however. It is the story about the extent to which "news" is routinely checked and approved -- censored -- by the Government before newspapers print it.

The NYT story is  titled: "Latest Word on the Trail? I Take It Back."

It opens:

The quotations come back redacted, stripped of colorful metaphors, colloquial language and anything even mildly provocative.

They are sent by e-mail from the Obama headquarters in Chicago to reporters who have interviewed campaign officials under one major condition: the press office has veto power over what statements can be quoted and attributed by name.

Most reporters, desperate to pick the brains of the president’s top strategists, grudgingly agree. After the interviews, they review their notes, check their tape recorders and send in the juiciest sound bites for review.

...

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In the Daily Beast, as linked on Drudge, a fairly wide audience will read, matter of fact, that there is now some concern about securing WMD in Syria that just might have come from Iraq in the run-up to the Iraq War.

Impossible -- Bushliedpeopledied! At least, that was the mantra the Left used like a leg-hold trap to clamp down on the Bush adminstration. They couldn't shake it. Stranger still, they didn't try,

But here we are in 2012 entertaining the possibility that the CIA is chasing down WMD in Syria that might have Iraqi provenance.

DeSutter also said she would want the U.S. and international community to secure any remaining nuclear-related equipment from the al-Kibar reactor destroyed in 2007 by Israeli jets. Also unclear is what, if anything, Iraq transferred to Syria before the 2003 U.S. invasion. “That is the wild card,” said DeSutter.



Whether or not...

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Cold Case Posse lead investigator Mike Zullo explaining more anomalies in the White House ilustration known as the president's "birth certificate." Even though the media isn't reporting the story, 45 percent of the American people get the idea.

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From YouGov polling:

Polling conducted last week suggests that whatever remaining effect of the release of the birth certificate that persisted through January is completely gone today. From June 30-July 2, 2012, YouGov surveyed 1000 Americans and asked whether “Barack Obama was born in the United States of America.” In the table below, I present these results, alongside the earlier polls that I presented in my January post.

 "Barack Obama was born in the United States": Full Sample April 2011 January 2012    July 2012 ...

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There is one operative word in Andy McCarthy's illuminating examination of some of the facts obscured by the weird and racuous apotheosis of Huma Abedin currently enlivening the hysterical demonization of Rep. Michele Bachmann by the media and John McCain, a grotesque and shameful display triggered by a question -- one question -- Bachmann and four other House Republicans have raised about Abedin's close family connections to the rapacious Islamic supremacist group, the Muslim Brotherhood.

That word is "adults."

Having outlined these connections, which are not, the former federal prosecutor writes, "contrived or weightless," McCarthy notes it's not "a crime to have close relatives who are either members of, or associated with members of such an organization. Again, however," he patiently explains, "no one is accusing Huma Abedin of a crime."

He continues:

The five House conservatives instead are asking questions that adults responsible for national security should...

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This week's syndicated column:

Be alarmed: The U.S. government continues to be “advised by organizations and individuals that the U.S. government itself has identified in federal courts as fronts for the international Muslim Brotherhood.” So wrote Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., in a lengthy, heavily footnoted answer to a query last week from Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn. He was seeking more information about the reasons Bachmann plus four other House Republicans – Louis Gohmert (Texas), Trent Franks (Ariz.),  Lynn Westmoreland (Ga.) and Thomas Rooney (Fla.) – requested Inspector General investigations into “potential Muslim Brotherhood infiltration” of the government. (See all of the letters here.) Yes, that would be the same Muslim Brotherhood whose leaders are sweeping to power in the Middle East – most recently in Egypt. There, the new president, Mohamed Morsi, fired up...

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According to the Pakistan News Service and Tehran Times, Iran and Afghanistan will be signing a strategic agreement to include provisions for Iran to train Afghan security forces.

The story comes from Iran's foreign minister speaking on Afghan TV, but will it in fact come to pass? We'll see. Iran has been offering to train Iraqi government forces for years; Maliki has even asked Iran for military support, even as Iran been training and supporting anti-US forces, also for years.

...

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John McCain went to the floor of the Senate today to vouch for Huma Abedin, Hillary Clinton's senior aide, whose reported familial connections to Muslim Brotherhood groups is included among an array of security  concerns regarding potential MB influence in the US government that was raised recently by five House Republicans.

Huma's bona fides aside, it's impossible to resist noting that John McCain is the guy who went to Benghazi last year to vouch for the al-Qaeda-linked "rebels." "They are my heroes," the AZ senator said on a tour of the city that took him to the very spot where his "heroes" had publicly cut off the head of a Qaddafi supporter a couple of weeks earlier.

In an essay tagging McCain for reprising his up-the-(al Qaeda)-rebel role now in Syria, John Rosenthal recaps last year's McCain junket to the AQ-in-Libya stronghold. There is something in these pilgrimages that is strangely reminiscent of those the Left used to make to an array of Communist garden spots to praise...

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John L. Work on Sheriff Arpaio's latest Cold Case Posse revelations.

Bottom line: the Fraud in Chief is still the Fraud in Chief and the "News" Media still won't bite.



John writes:

With thanks to Drudge, here’s the lead AP story on his site this morning, following the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office Cold Case Posse’s press conference yesterday afternoon:

PHOENIX (AP) — Investigators for an Arizona sheriff’s volunteer posse have declared that President Barack Obama’s birth certificate is definitely fraudulent.

Members of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s posse said in March that there was probable cause that Obama’s long-form birth certificate released by the White House in April 2011 was a computer-generated forgery.

Now, Arpaio says investigators are positive it’s fraudulent.

Mike Zullo, the posse’s chief investigator, said numeric codes on certain parts of the birth certificate indicate that...

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Australian Sgt. Blaine Diddams, RIP

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From the Sydney Morning Herald a report titled ""Fears over Afghan army, Taliban collusion." As you read it, ask yourself at what point in this tragically familiar, numbingly repetitive cycle of Afghan army/Taliban collusion do Western commanders, both civilian and military, bear responsibility for KNOWING FULL WELL that such collusion is commonplace?

In the act of betrayal described below, the target of the raid mounted by Australian troops and their Afghan "partners" was a Taliban leader of 100 men from a handful of villages. Ask yourself also: How is that those 100 measly fighters in the Afghan bush magnetically draw the concentrated might of the Western democracies? Better: tell me how is it that those 100 fighters threaten the Western democracies...

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The Washington Times story  about former FBI director Louis Freeh's damning report on the Penn State cover-up of the Jerry Sandusky pedophilia scandal ends on a provocative note:

“We have a great deal of respect for Mr. Paterno," Mr. Freeh said. “He has a terrific legacy, a great legacy. We’re not singling him out, but put him in the same category with four other people. But the facts are the facts. There is a whole bunch of evidence for the reasonable conclusion that he was an integral part of the active decision to conceal.”

Is it really "respect" that we have for Joe Paterno, the fired Penn State football coach, on learning from the Freeh report that he bald-faced-lied to a Grand Jury and others concerning what he knew and when he knew it about Jerry Sandusky's predatory sexual pursuit of boys going back to 1998? "Respect" may be a nod to achievement, but it is also closely linked to good character. Those whom we respect we hold in high honor. What Freeh is acknowledging is Paterno's formidable football record. It is true that his record of wins on the playing field remains unchanged by any revelations of any investigation. But as a legacy, as a measure of the man, it is forever altered.

...

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Hillary and Erdogan, together, in Istambul: Today, the CT Forum; tomorrow, the umma!

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This week's column:

The Washington Free Beacon reported this week on the continuing omission of Israel from a U.S.-sponsored organization called the Global Counterterrorism Forum (GCTF). At a recent forum meeting in Spain, Maria Otero, U.S. undersecretary of state for civilian security, democracy and human rights, delivered a speech titled "Victims of Terrorism," but, in her roll call of victims, she didn't mention Israel. The conference at which she spoke was described as a "high-level conference on the victims of terrorism," but Israel wasn't a participant.

It bears repeating because it is so fantastic: At an international conference devoted to victims of terrorism, the world's leading victim or, better, leading target of terrorism -- Israel -- was nowhere in sight,...

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Drudge posted a scare piece last night that gave me nightmares: Condi Rice is supposedly a frontrunner for the Romney 2012 ticket.

This Condi-flutter happened before in 2008 and I was horrified then, too.

Just on the most basic political calculations, you don't have to be a high-priced political consultant to know that no voter who isn't already attracted to Romney will flock to a Romney-Rice ticket. No black person, no woman, no state, no constituency would suddenly decide boost a Romney vote count just because Condi was there.

Second (and I can sense the Obama camp licking its chops), selecting Rice would link (manacle) Romney to George W. Bush -- a political bonanza for Democrats!

Third, fourth, fifth, etc. are contained in a series of columns and posts I've previously written about Rice. The bottom line is that Condoleezza Rice looks at both the United...

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The LA Times reports: "Afghanistan's Karzai urges Taliban leader Omar to run for president."

This is just a bad dream, right?

Wrong.







KABUL, Afghanistan -- President Hamid Karzai had a suggestion Thursday for Mullah Mohammad Omar, the fugitive leader of the Taliban movement: Run for president if you want.

The Afghan leader, speaking at a news conference, urged the Taliban chief to embark on negotiations with his government and take part in the political process. He said Omar and his “comrades” could set up a political party and that Omar himself could become a candidate for office if he wished.

“If people vote for him, he can take the leadership,” Karzai declared. Afghanistan’s next presidential elections are scheduled in 2014.

Karzai also said that Omar could visit...

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The Free Beacon reported this week on the continuing omission of Israel from the new Global Counterterrorism Forum (GCTF). At a recent forum meeting in Spain, Maria Otero, US Under Secretary of State, delivered a speech titled "Victims of Terrorism" but she didn't mention Israel The conference at which she spoke was called a "High-Level Conference on the Victims of Terrorism," but it didn't include Israel as a participant. It bears repeating because it is so fantastic: At a US-supported international conference on victims of terrorism, the world's leading victim, or, better, leading target of terrorism -- Israel -- was nowhere in sight, or mind.

Welcome to the GCTF -- US counterterrorism's new "normal." This 30-member organization got its official start last September as a "major initiative" of the Obama administration when Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, all palsy-walsy with her Turkish co-chair, and thanking assorted Arab royal highnesses, announced its launch.

It was...

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The Florida Circuit Court in session

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My power was already out when the Florida ballot challenge decision came down last week, but it will still blow anyone's fuse:

From WND.com:

The judge in a Florida lawsuit challenging Barack Obama’s eligibility to be president has dismissed the case “with prejudice.”

In his issued ruling Circuit Judge Terry Lewis agreed with White House attorneys that Obama’s eligibility could not be challenged under Florida election law because, technically, Obama hasn’t been nominated yet and furthermore, the judge said, Obama’s birth in the U.S. meets the Constitution’s requirements for being a “natural born citizen.”

The judge also laid the burden of proof for Obama's ineligibility on the plaintiff even though he prohibited any discovery process that would have permitted Obama's i.d. docs to be subpoenaed...

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I don't know. But on July 6 -- a holiday-weekend Friday -- the White House posted an Executive Order setting up Napolitano's Department of Homeland Security as the uber-communications authority during a national emergency with some peculiar little clauses that make me wonder. (Hat tip: John L. Work.)

Obama's Order creates an Executive Committee for National Security/Emergency Preparedness (NS/EP) under the Secretaries of Defense and Homeland Security, and a Executive Committee Joint Program Office under the Secretary of Homeland Security to support the Executive Committee.

That's the blah-blah part. The parts enumerating duties and powers, however, despite the same mind-numbing official patois, seem like anything but hot air.

...

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On July 2, Susan Daniels, a licensed private investigator and write-in candidate for president in Ohio, filed suit in Geauga County against Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted. Daniels presents credible evidence that President Obama is fraudulently using a Connecticut Social Security number, and, as a result, calls on the court: 1) to prohibit Ohio Secretary of State Hulsted from entering Obama's name on the Ohio presidential ballot in November until it is determined that Obama's Social Security number was properly issued; and further, (2) to order Secretary of State Hulsted to investigate Obama's fraudulent use of a Connecticut Social Security number.

Jack Cashill's report is here. I just had a chance to listen to Daniels' interview with Mark Gillar here, and read her complaint here. It is all explosive stuff. It fails to explode inside the media bubble only because that media bubble, Left and Right, is a vacuum hermetically sealed against  reality. That doesn't mean,...

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World donors in Tokyo this weekend will cluck a little over the billions we have watched go down the Afghanistan drain or into the pockets of its kleptocratic elite, but then they will open our financial arteries again, bleeding still more billions into the Kabul dust. For nothing.

And worse than nothing.

The latest example of worse-than-nothing is Afghanistan's proposed new mass media law that is expected to come before the Afghan parliament.

That would be the same Afghan parliament, of course, recently investigated by three Afghan media organizations after a member was suspected of taking bribes from Iran. The attorney general of Afghanistan is now investigating ... the three media organizations.

The Committee to Protect Journalists raises...

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...

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This week's syndicated column:

After nearly four days without power following the freak storm that left millions in the mid-Atlantic states in the dark, one thing I could do when the electricity came back on was try to figure out who coined the mortifyingly apt greeting, “Happy Dependence Day.”

Was it the Washington Times editorial page, which so titled its July 4 holiday comment on Obamacare and the burgeoning superstate? Was it author, screenwriter and blogger Andrew Klavan, two days earlier, writing along the same lines at PJMedia? Was it the writer of a July 2 letter in the Arizona Republic urging electoral change in November lest we celebrate “Dependence Day” – as in dependence on the federal government – from here on out?

No. The earliest use I have found in a by-no-means exhaustive search was in 2010 by cartoonist A.F. Branco marking President Obama’s giant spending programs. Recycling the slogan this week, Branco came up with a far more potent image. In his one-frame cartoon, star-spangled letters spell out “Happy Independence Day” as a gavel labeled SCOTUS whacks the “In” off “Independence.” Happy Dependence Day.

...

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Rafalca and Jan Ebeling. Ebeling, Ann Romney and Beth Meyer each own  one-third of the 15-year-old Oldenburg mare, a dressage champion. With 53-year-old Ebeling aboard, Rafalca will be making her Olympics debut for the USA in August.

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Robert Strauss, a longtime correspondent of this blog, writes in today concerning an anti-Olympics op-ed in the New York Times by two academics: Jules Bykoff, an associate professor of political science at Pacific University, "who is writing a book on dissent and the Olympics," and Alan Tomlinson, professor of "leisure studies" at the University of Brighton. Their piece critiques the commercialism of it all, the cronyism of it all, the privilege of it all (aha!) ... and "Ann Romney's horse," which is probably the raison d'etre of it all.

Bob writes:

Honestly, I don't have much concern for the Olympics one way or the other.  And gee, who'd a thunk that a major sports event would be overly commercialized!   But what's interesting about...

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From KPBS in San Diego, a report whose narrator's happy, girly voice makes the story all the more horrifying.

And if you think imposing sharia-compliance on the YMC(hristian)A is the end of it, think again.

There are also cultural barriers that keep them from using the parks. The women can’t risk coming into contact with off-leash dogs. They follow strict hygiene guidelines in their faith, which considers dogs to be unclean, or not halal.



"Halal" Golden Retriever puppies

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They also didn’t grow up with dogs as pets.

“In Africa, dogs are kind of wild, so you never see a good dog. So when any women of East Africa see dogs, we tend to be scared,” Abdi said. “So those two issues are real—the religion and the cultural.”

Abdi said the women want to work on making the parks safer next.

Let's hope Americans stand up for their dogs better than they stand up for themselves.





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"Happy Dependence Day," the Washington Times editorial page wishes America -- and with good reason. By too many (most?) measures, we are no longer a self-governing people, no matter how many fireworks go off tonight across the country to celebrate a state of liberty we no longer enjoy. (Ask Arizona.) Meanwhile, on the National Mall, the extreme security apparatus imposed on America's 236th birthday party  -- security entry checkpoints, "eye in the sky" surveillance, sub-machine-gun armed police, undercover agents, baggage searches -- belie any notion of living in " the land of the free." Whether we admit it -- and we don't -- we are a nation under siege by Islamic jihad even as our individual autonomy falls to the encroaching superstate.

...

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Not all that long after the Supremes decimated sovereignty and self-government with knockout-blow-rulings on Arizona and Obamacare, and the State Department issued a visa to a member of Egypt's Islamic Group, a massive storm knocked out the power and phones of hundreds of thousands of people in the Washington area (me, included).

Coincidence?

I will have to keep silent counsel while awaiting restoration -- of power, phones, and liberty.

This week's syndicated column:

With so many assaults on the boundaries of governance and sovereignty in the news lately, reflecting on the career of writer and Hollywood director Nora Ephron, who died this week at 71, may seem off-topic. But upon reading through many glowing Ephron appreciations, I realize that in her work lies another broken boundary. It is a cultural one, and every bit as significant as lines on the map or in the Constitution.

In a scene from her most famous movie, “When Harry Met Sally” (1989), Ephron brought to mainstream, predominantly female audiences the spectacle of a professional actress (Meg Ryan), not a porn prop, performing an extended impression of an orgasm in a crowded delicatessen. It was supposed to be the ultimate put-down of her crass male companion (Billy Crystal). Was this merely a smart update of the onscreen battle of the sexes once famously waged by Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy? Or had we become party to something darker? Either way, America...

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From Politico via Drudge:

Democratic National Committee Exective Director Patrick Gaspard, on the news that the SCOTUS had upheld Obamacare:

"It's constitutional. Bitches."



I find it difficult to regard the Supreme Court decision on Arizona immigration law as just another controversial or disappointing highest court decision. There is something almost post-apocolyptic and certainly pre-totalitarian when, to invoke Justice Scalia's dissent, the Court has ruled that Arizona contradicts federal law by enforcing it. Yes, as Scalia put it, it "boggles the mind." It also conjures up truly alarming comparisons with "justice" as meted out by kangaroo courts, show trials and other horrors of totalitarian dictatorships.

We understand such criminal acts of going through the motions as sham procedures that have no intention of upholding the rule of law, but rather go forward to entrench an ideology or regime or, usually, both. It is shocking, therefore, to see even a pale reflection of such things in this ruling, the perfect endpiece...

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Yesterday, Hamid Karzai told the Afghan parliament two things:

(1) "Corruption has reached its peak in Afghanistan" --



and (2) Afghanistan expects to receive another $4 billion from the West at a donor summit next month in Japan.

Lemme tell ya, so long as money is involved -- any amount of money -- corruption will never reach its peak in Afghanistan. Which means we Westerners should zip our change purses and pony up no more than is needed to fly our Afghan-based citizens home. Every additional dime and dollar, million and billion is a waste.

There is an added danger in supporting the grotesquely expensive Afghan habit:...

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This week's syndicated column:

Are we watching the meltdown of Barack Obama, soon to become a radioactive pile from which voters will run come November? Or are we instead witnessing the stirrings of a kind of political phoenix heretofore unseen in American history?

By any traditional measure, news in the past week or two alone should sink Barack Obama’s chances for a second term. First, Obama biographer Stanley Kurtz reported new and definitive proof that, as a 34-year-old embarking on his political career, Obama belonged to the anti-capitalist – indeed, socialist – New Party, a phase of his political development he has not only never repudiated but also has hidden from the American people. By any traditional...

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The Washington Post's Dana Milbank has earned the PrObamedia Laurels this week (or, at least, this morning -- competition is fast and furious) for blaming decreasing poll numbers measuring American confidence in the presidency not on Barack Obama's presidency but on ... "conservative leaders" and ... Tucker Carlson!

Milbank writes:

Under the Obama presidency, however, conservative leaders are encouraging the vulgarity if not joining in, by heckling the president from the House floor.

To decipher: "Conservative leaders" = one Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC), who in January 2010  famously shouted  "You lie!" during SOTU when Prez O did  indeed lie to the effect that health care for illegal aliens would not be funded under Obamacare. (It is.) Extra credit question for Dana Milbank: What debases the presidency more -- lying to the American people in the carefully...

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Is -- as the echoes tell us after AG Holder's on-target contempt citation from the House Oversight Committee -- Obama having a "bad week"? Or, when we fold in the practically already forgotten Rose Garden Amnesty for "the children," is constitutional government itself under assault? And how would the Oracle at Delphi interpret the growing list of Democrats (hailing from four states, four US Reps. one US Senator and a state governor) who have announced they will not be going to the Democratic Convention in Charlotte in September? I don't remember that EVER happening before. Either a blowout is coming ... or a big blow. Batten down the hatches.



Spc. Jarrod Lallier was 20 years old when three Afghan policemen fired on his unit in Afghanistan, killing the Spokane, Washington native and wounding nine other soldiers. The gunmen are still at large. Lallier returned to the United States in a flag-draped coffin on Tuesday.

Another American killed by Afghan "allies" -- the grim toll that General Dempsey likes to dispense with as "additional risk."

RIP.

From the Spokesman-Review:

Spc. Jarrod Lallier always knew he wanted to serve his country. “He said that since he was a little boy,” said his mother, Kim Lallier. “As his mom, I always tried talking him out of it. As he grew up, we knew it was even a stronger conviction.” Lallier, a graduate of Mead High School, was killed in Afghanistan when men in Afghan police uniforms turned their weapons...

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... a few stories of note:

Staunch support from the White House, the State Department, and the past three ambassadors to Iraq notwithstanding, Brett McGurk, Prez O's choice for US ambassador to Iraq, withdrew his nomination from consideration on Monday, one day before a scheduled vote in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Friday's column opposing McGurk's nomination is here.

Cliff Kincaid has a terrific column out reminding us of what is likely the main, staggering reason classified information has been gushing from the White House: President Obama, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and top presidential...

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One day, we may look back on the criminal charges the Army has brought against SFC Walter Taylor as the very worst abuse of prosecutorial discretion of the wars that began 11 years ago. The highly regarded and seasoned non-commissioned officer has been charged with negligent homicide, which the US Army claims was committed during an enveloping attack in Afghanistan somewhere along the so-called Highway of Death between Kabul and Kandahar. In an eternity of four seconds, SFC Walter Taylor decided to fire upon what turned out to be civilians in a car, killing a woman and two young people, her son and her niece.

The basic facts from the must-read account in the LA Times:

His convoy was reeling from a roadside bomb, his fellow soldiers were engaged...

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This week's syndicated column:

Does “character” count? How about the more archaic notion of “reputation”? Not in the Obama administration, now standing tall behind what in Washington parlance is called the “troubled” nomination of Brett McGurk to be U.S. ambassador to Iraq.

McGurk’s nomination foundered last week after the surfacing online of a tawdry series of private emails between McGurk, then married and the top U.S. negotiator of the U.S.-Iraq security agreement, and Gina Chon, then a Wall Street Journal reporter based in Baghdad. Their subjects? Sex and sensitive information, and the pair’s mutually titillating practice of horse-trading both. If I think back to my Victorian novel class in college, I find the perfect word for what the 2008 exchanges reveal about the temperament and judgment of the man whom the administration and...

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Chic "European" couture on a Brussels street in Molenbeek

---

The Brussels neghborhood of Molenbeek has been in the news lately, as the video below vividly explains. Back in 2008, I visited the Muslim enclave by car, not foot, because it was too dangerous to stroll the Olde-Worlde-meets-Casbah streets as non-Islamic "foreigners" -- in Europe's "capital"!

I took a lot of pics, which are here.

Even before six GOP Senators asked President Obama to withdraw the odious McGurk (above) as his "uniquely qualified" nominee to be ambassador to Iraq (what took them so long), Peter van Buren volunteered for the job:

From van Buren's blog We Meant Well:

With the McGurk nomination in trouble, despite State claiming he is uniquely qualified, prudent planning suggests State should have a replacement in the wings. I hereby volunteer and submit I too am uniquely qualified.

1. I spent a year in Iraq and screwed up most of what I tried to do, like McGurk. Advantage: McGurk, he was there longer and messed up a lot more things.

2. Unlike McGurk, there are no sweaty messages in my email archives. As part of its dirt-digging investigation into me because of my book and this blog, the State Department reviewed years of my emails, as well as my old travel vouchers and credit reports. They did not find anything worth punishing me over. Advantage: me.

3. As I already work...

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