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Sunday, December 11, 2011

MFS - The Other News


                    Morning Posting.

  • Updated !Earthquakes in the last 24 hours in the world seismic activity situation South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands 6.0 - 6.1 ; Fiji 5.6 !More info here.

  • Why Obama Will Not Veto NDAA Military Detention of Americans: He Requested It.(BLN).Source: Ralph LopezSen. Carl Levin (D-MI) on Senate floor explaining it was Obama who requested the provision for indefinite military detention of American citizens without charge or trial. Senator Diane Feinstein recently confirmed that she was unable to excise Section 1031 in an email:  Senator Feinstein Confirms President and Military Can Detain US Citizens Without a Trial Like you, I oppose these provisions. Section 1031 is problematic because it authorizes the indefinite detention of American citizens without due process. In this democracy, due process is a fundamental right, and it protects us from being locked up by the government without charge. For this reason, I offered an amendment to prohibit the indefinite detention of U.S. citizens without trial or charge. Unfortunately, on December 1, 2011, this amendment failed by a vote of 45-55.I was, however, able to reach a compromise with the authors of the defense bill to state that no existing law or authorities to detain suspected terrorists are changed by this section of the bill. While I would have preferred to have restricted the government’s ability to detain U.S. citizens without charge, this compromise at least ensures that the bill does not expand the government’s authority in this area.In a stunning move that has civil libertarians stuttering with disbelief, the U.S. Senate has just passed a bill that effectively ends the Bill of Rights in America.The National Defense Authorization Act is being called the most traitorous act ever witnessed in the Senate, and the language of the bill is cleverly designed to make you think it doesn't apply to Americans, but toward the end of the bill, it essentially says it can apply to Americans "if we want it to..."  Anonymous - Message to the American People Full transcript at youtube. More in the following video from:Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, former Chief of Staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell.Wilkerson: New Military Powers the Road to Tyranny.Hmmmm....I bring reason to your ears, and, in language as plain as ABC, hold up truth to your eyes~ Thomas Paine, December 23, 1776.Read the full story here.


  • Patriots to Rally Tuesday as Holder Plans Major Announcement on Voting Laws.(BigGovernment).Just when you thought Attorney General Eric Holder couldn’t get more sordid and arrogant, he has. His testimony last week before the House Judiciary Committee took the scandal plagued Justice Department into territory not traveled since John Mitchell worked overtime to conceal administration wrongdoing nearly four decades ago. Even Chairman Darrell Issa recognizes the comparison is appropriate.On Tuesday, Americans will have a rare chance to voice their disdain of the corruption and lies flowing from this Justice Department. They will have a chance to speak out against the radical and racialist law enforcement priorities of this Justice Department. Eric Holder comes to Austin, Texas to make a major announcement about voting laws, probably to acquiesce to some loud demand of the NAACP to block state efforts to ensure voter integrity. But a counter-rally organized by Catherine Engelbrecht and True the Vote will greet Eric Holder’s appearance in Austin, Texas at the LBJ Library at 4 p.m. America is invited, and here is a flier with details.You have a First Amendment right to petition your government for redress of grievances. Use it. So rarely has so much been worth grieving.As bad as Watergate was, it didn’t involve hundreds of murders, dead American law enforcement agents, and the illegal distribution of thousands of firearms. How long has it been since an Attorney General appeared before Congress and words such as “contempt” and “impeachment” were used by members as they were last week?The Fast and Furious scandal isn’t the only mess overseen by Eric Holder. His entire tenure has been characterized by racialist radicalism, disguised to some critics as mere incompetence. But it is far worse than incompetence, and to think otherwise is a mistake. From the dismissal of the voter intimidation case against racist anti-Semitic New Black Panther thugs, to the Mirandizing of battlefield captures in Afghanistan, Holder has presided over a systemic radicalization of the most powerful federal agency. This isn’t incompetence. It is radicalism.Many in Washington remain unconvinced of the extent of the destructive radicalism permeating this administration, and particularly the DOJ. In the speeches I give around the country, I lament that I wish Bill Clinton was still President. These are not your grandfather’s democrats. These are not just liberals. From bringing cases to force schools to allow child transvestites, to forcing schools to give Muslim teachers almost four weeks paid vacation for an Islamic pilgrimage, radicalism prevails.Ponder the racialist rot that Eric Holder carries in his wallet. I write in my book “Injustice about a clipping he has carried since 1971. Holder’s clipping says: Blackness is another issue entirely apart from class in America. No matter how affluent, educated and mobile [a black person] becomes, his race defines him more particularly than anything else. Black people have a common cause that requires attending to, and this cause does not allow for the rigid class separation that is the luxury of American whites. There is a sense in which every black man is as far from liberation as the weakest one if his weakness is attributable to racial injustice.In “Injustice,” I note: When asked to explain the passage, Holder replied, “It really says that … I am not the tall U.S. attorney, I am not the thin United States Attorney. I am the black United States attorney. And he was saying that no matter how successful you are, there’s a common cause that bonds the black United States attorney with the black criminal or the black doctor with the black homeless person.”When you witness Holder’s contempt for the rule of law, his disdain for enforcing civil rights and voting laws equally regardless of the race of the victim, and his disdain toward members of Congress, this quote explains a great deal.This Tuesday at 4 p.m., in Austin, Texas, at the LBJ library, Americans tired of this sort of contempt, this racialist lawlessness, have a chance to let the Attorney General know they expect something better from high office. See you in Austin.Hmmm.........I bring reason to your ears, and, in language as plain as ABC, hold up truth to your eyes. ~ Thomas Paine, December 23, 1776.Read the full story here.


  • Navy buys biofuel for $16 a gallon from company with... Obama fundraising ties.(HotAir).By J.E.Dyer.This is going to help the Defense Department weather looming budget cuts, for sure. Teaming up with the Department of Agriculture (which has a cheery Rotary Club ring to it), the Navy has purchased 450,000 gallons of biofuel for about $16 a gallon, or about 4 times the price of its standard marine fuel, JP-5, which has been going for under $4 a gallon.You won’t be surprised to learn that a member of Obama’s presidential transition team, T. J. Glauthier, is astrategic advisor” at Solazyme, the California company that is selling a portion of the biofuel to the Navy. Glauthier worked – shock, shock – on the energy-sector portion of the 2009 stimulus bill.The Navy sale isn’t Solazyme’s first trip to the public trough, of course. The company got a $21.8 million grant from the 2009 stimulus package.Solazyme’s partner in the biofuel sale is Dynamic Fuels, a Louisiana company owned jointly by Tyson Foods and Tulsa-based Syntroleum. Tyson and Syntroleum are distinguished by having profitable lines of business that do not rely on government grants to unprofitable “green” projects. This does not make their biofuel product price-competitive with fossil fuels, however. (They were induced to develop biofuel manufacturing processes by a combination of subsidies and tax breaks.)The Dynamic Fuels plant was opened for business in Geismar, LA in 2010, becoming by far the largest biofuels plant in North America – and reportedly, in combination with a plant in Finland, a producer of 94% of the world’s biofuels. This is great boosterism stuff, but the biofuels produced by Dynamic Fuels are still considerably more expensive than the fossil-fuel alternative. Dynamic Fuels has begun supplying aviation biofuel to KLM, the Dutch flag carrier, but of course, the use of more-expensive biofuels by commercial carriers has to be subsidized by governments.If governments stopped subsidizing biofuels, their artificial “profitability” would disappear overnight. Price-wise, they can’t compete with fossil fuels. The day may come when they can, but subsidizing them while they don’t is not a method with any record of success for encouraging price efficiency. What it does instead is create languishing public dependencies and tremendous opportunities for cronyism, as demonstrated in the Solyndra scandal.Read the full story here.
  • The Bomb Buried In Obamacare Explodes Today-Hallelujah!(Forbes).By Rick Ungar.I have long argued that the impact of the Affordable Care Act is not nearly as big of a deal as opponents would have you believe. At the end of the day, the law is – in the main – little more than a successful effort to put an end to some of the more egregious health insurer abuses while creating an environment that should bring more Americans into programs that will give them at least some of the health care coverage they need.There is, however, one notable exception – and it’s one that should have a long lasting and powerful impact on the future of health care in our country.That would be the provision of the law, called the medical loss ratio, that requires health insurance companies to spend 80% of the consumers’ premium dollars they collect—85% for large group insurers—on actual medical care rather than overhead, marketing expenses and profit. Failure on the part of insurers to meet this requirement will result in the insurers having to send their customers a rebate check representing the amount in which they underspend on actual medical care.This is the true ‘bomb’ contained in Obamacare and the one item that will have more impact on the future of how medical care is paid for in this country than anything we’ve seen in quite some time. Indeed, it is this aspect of the law that represents the true ‘death panel’ found in Obamacare—but not one that is going to lead to the death of American consumers. Rather, the medical loss ratio will, ultimately, lead to the death of large parts of the private, for-profit health insurance industry.Why? Because there is absolutely no way for-profit health insurers are going to be able to learn how to get by and still make a profit while being forced to spend at least 80 percent of their receipts providing their customers with the coverage for which they paid. If they could, we likely would never have seen the extraordinary efforts made by these companies to avoid paying benefits to their customers at the very moment they need it the most.Today, that bomb goes off.Read the full story here.


  • LightSquared disrupts 75% of GPS receivers in gov’t testing.(Hotair).The saga of LightSquared added a new chapter last night, as Bloomberg reported on the preliminary result of tests of the satellite Internet provider’s service in relation to GPS devices. The Obama administration has pushed LightSquared as a provider for its ambitious broadband expansion over the objections of the military, which warned that LightSquared’s operations would interfere with the satellite-based navigational system. The draft summary of the November testing shows that the military was right to be concerned: Philip Falcone’s proposed LightSquared Inc. wireless service caused interference to 75 percent of global-positioning system receivers examined in a U.S. government test, according to a draft summary of results.The results from testing conducted Oct. 31 to Nov. 4 show that “millions of fielded GPS units are not compatible” with the planned nationwide wholesale service, according to the draft seen by Bloomberg News.“LightSquared signals caused harmful interference to majority of GPS receivers tested,” according to the draft prepared for a meeting next week of U.S. officials reviewing the LightSquared proposal. “No additional testing is required to confirm harmful interference exists.”LightSquared, backed by $3 billion from Falcone’s Harbinger Capital Partners hedge fund, faces challenges from makers of global-positioning system devices who say the service will disrupt navigation by cars, boats, tractors and planes. U.S. regulators are withholding approval as they check on claims of interference.If that was all there was to this story, then this would just be another commercial venture that struck out, with little interest outside the tech fields involved. However, the overwhelming failure of LightSquared’s test puts allegations from last summer in a new light. In September, four-star Air Force General William Shelton accused the White House of pressuring him in August to change his Congressional testimony to make his assessment of LightSquared more favorable. Another Congressional witness told Eli Lake that the White House had “offered guidance” on how to testify favorably towards LightSquared. Why is this important? Philip Falcone is a big donor to the Democratic Party, and he has billions of dollars at stake in LightSquared’s approval. Also, Obama himself was an investor in LightSquared at one point, as were or are a number of his associates. The resounding failure in this test makes it look like the White House pressured witnesses to back off of exposing LightSquared’s product as exactly the kind of dangerous problem that critics had maintained all along — with the intent to mislead Congress into moving forward with LightSquared’s government contracts.One amusing note: LightSquared announced two days ago that the same tests showed no problems at all. After Bloomberg reported on the draft report, the company expressed outrage over the “leak” of “preliminary results.” Yeah, we’re with you on the leak outrage, pal.Congress needs to add this to its growing list of investigations into the Obama administration.Hmmmm........Thugocracy in it's natural habitat.Read the full story here.


  • Muslim brotherhood:"move along nothing to see here".Egypt’s FJP denies turning journalists away from Kerry meeting.(Bikyamasr).CAIRO: The Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) denied reports it had turned away journalists from its headquarters on Saturday where a meeting between the chairman of the party Mohamed Morsy and John Kerry, head of the foreign relations committee in the US Congress and the American Ambassador in Cairo Ann Paterson.Egyptian newspaper al-Youm al-Saba’a reported that several journalists were barred from entering the facility to cover the meeting, while the FJP says no journalists were invited to begin with and denied telling reporters “we are home and we don’t want you to take pictures,” adding that this did not happen.“We didn’t send out invitations to the press and later released a statement about the meeting, so why would journalists show up if they are not invited,” Tareq Ahmed, media coordinator for FJP told Bikyamasr.com via the phone on Sunday.“No one showed up and was turned away,” Ahmed added.The meeting comes after the first round of the Egyptian parliamentary elections and has the Muslim Brotherhood’s political wing, the FJP, leading the polls and all eyes are on the results of the second and last stage, to begin on Monday.The meeting was also attended by Essam al-Erian, FJP deputy, and Mohamed al-Katatny, the general coordinator of the political arm of the Brotherhood’s party.FJP said the meeting discussed current affairs in Egypt, the economic crisis and where the party stands on the agreements and treaties that Egypt had previously signed, most notably the peace treaty with Israel.Morsy however, affirmed that the 1979 treaty previously signed will be respected for the greater good of the country.FJP said that Morsy explained to Kerry how for the very first time the Egyptian people are on the path to democracy with elections “going well,” while Kerry was quoted saying that the early wins of the FJP were “not surprising,” noting his and the American administration’s respect for the outcome of the elections.The first round of elections saw 36 percent going to the FJP followed by the ultra-conservative al-Nour Salafist party.On December 5, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called on all Egyptian parties to push forward on democracy.Clinton called on all parties, including the Islamists who appear to have taken the lion’s share of votes, to push toward democratic principles.The US has praised the Egypt voting process thus far as fair.Clinton, however, addressed many of the rising fears among secular activists in the country that the revolutoin they participated in was being hijacked by the Islamist groups, who largely kept away from the 18 days of protests that led to the fall of Mubarak and paved the way for elections.“Transitions require fair and inclusive elections, but they also demand the embrace of democratic norms and rules,” she said. “We expect all democratic actors to uphold universal human rights, including women’s rights, to allow free religious practice.”Hmmm....Another 'most transparant administration' in the making?Note how all (Including Kerry) agreed not to mention Israel!Read the full story here.


  • Russian regions say vote protests largely peaceful.(RN).Russian Authorized and unauthorized protests in dozens of Russian cities, in which at least 60,000 people across the country are estimated to take part, were largely peaceful.Read the full story here.

  • Make Way for the Muslim Brotherhood International!(DocsTalk).By Barry Rubin.
“Arise, you prisoners of starvation!
Arise, you wretched of the earth!
For justice thunders condemnation:
A better world's in birth!”
So begins the Internationale, the theme song of Communism. So far it is perfectly acceptable for Islamists though some later verses make clear the Marxist movement’s secularism: “No savior from on high delivers.”The First Internationale of radical workers’ movements was founded in 1864; the Second, of Socialist parties, in 1889; the Third International, of Communist parties, in 1919; and the Fourth Internationale, of Trotskyist parties, in 1938. And now, though nobody will use this terminology, it’s time for the Fifth Internationale, that of the Muslim Brotherhoods. The precise relationships among different Brotherhood groups have always been shadowy. Clearly, this is not a centralized organization but there is a lot of help, including financial aid, among these groups. And the Egyptian branch is always the senior one. If there is any leader of the international movement it is the Egyptian Brotherhood's Supreme Guide Muhammad al-Badi and he's a real hardliner, even on the Brotherhood's spectrum.Today, as always, the Egyptian branch is the largest and most powerful. Founded in 1928, having collaborated with Nazi Germany, then carried out terrorism in the 1940s and early 1950s, the Brotherhood was suppressed by Egypt’s radical nationalist regime. It was allowed to revive in the 1970s but was constantly under harassment, though at times it ran in elections. Now it has emerged as the strongest political force in Egypt, seemingly headed toward state power for the first time.But it is not alone. The Jordanian branch has run with some success in elections but the monarchy has always ensured that it wouldn’t win. The Syrian branch was repressed bloodily in 1982 but continued underground and has now emerged as a significant power in the opposition. Indeed, the U.S. government and its Turkish allies constructed and now recognized an exiled opposition leadership that is dominated by the Brotherhood.The Palestinian branch, called Hamas, now rules the Gaza Strip. The Tunisian branch is forming a government and the Brotherhood is emerging in Libya, where it might be able to take power some day. Smaller groupings exist in other Arabic-speaking countries.Of special significance, the Brotherhood has spread to Europe and North America where it often--partly thanks to na├»ve governments and not-too-bright media coverage—dominates Muslim communities.Is it moderate? Think of the Brotherhood as to Islamism what the Communist Party was to Marxism. And that makes Egypt potentially the green equivalent of the Soviet Union. Oh, and it makes 2011 into the equivalent of 1917.Here's the man who I think is just about the best political analyst in the Arab world, Abd al-Rahman al-Rashid on this topic: "The Islamist party leaders hastened to embellish their image for the Western countries....Of course, these speeches are public relations acts, and could only be believed by someone ignorant about the region or by the logic of the religious parties. [At most, these claims of moderation] expresses the opinion of few leaders only, because the majority of leaders and cadres of these groups consider cleansing the society as their first duty, and it would not be long before they topple the tolerant leaders."Now the movement is emerging in the form of a transnational alliance between governments and powerful opposition movements in different countries. We are seeing the formation of this Muslim Brotherhood international, the alliance of these groups in Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, the Gaza Strip (Hamas), Jordan, and Syria, with financial backing from Qatar. We are going to be hearing more about this in the coming months and years.Here’s an example. The most important Islamist commander of the new Libyan military forces has been sent to Turkey to work with the Syrian opposition army.Is there any alliance on the other side? Any transnational organization of Arab centrist or even leftist parties? No.Is there any covert operations by Western countries to help the moderates with money and other aid to match what the Brotherhood is doing (and for that matter, Qatar, Iran, Turkey, or Syria)? Also, no.Why even the Obama Administration likes those loveable moderates who obey the rules of democracy.So if this battle is so one-sided who do you think is going to win?I feel like Sir Edward Grey, the British foreign secretary in 1914, who remarked at the onset of World War One: "The lamps are going out all over Europe. We shall not see them lit again in our time."Well, either I’m right or the Muslim Brotherhood will take to democracy like women to chadors and soon they’ll be patching potholes with the best of them and making painful compromises:“Ok, we’re agreed! Sharia law only applies on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays!”Think about this: In the year 2012 the overwhelming majority of Muslims in the Middle East--about a quarter-billion people--will be governed by radical Islamist regimes that believe in waging jihad on Israel and America, wiping Israel off the map, suppressing Christians, reducing the status of women even more than it is now, and their right as true interpreters of God's will to govern as dictators. (Egypt, Gaza Strip, Iran, Lebanon, Libya, Tunisia, and Turkey) That doesn't mean they are doing all of these things right now but they are intending to do so when they consolidate power fully.Hmmm....The 'people that the Obama regime promised $ 1.57 Billion for 2012. Read the full story here.


  • New Warning About Muslim Brotherhood’s Influence on White House From…Liberal Marxist Muslim.(DocsTalk).By Billy Hallowell.You‘ll never guess who’s now warning about a Muslim Brotherhood influence at the White House. Newt Gingrich? Nope. John Bolton? Not exactly.Instead, it’s Canadian political activist, devout Muslim and self-described liberal Marxist, Tarek Fatah. Surprised? Back in June, Fatah appeared at Ideacity, Canada’s “Premier meeting of the minds” to share his shocking viewpoints on both mainstream and radical Islam (including the Muslim Brotherhood). During his fascinating talk, Fatah said that “the religion of Islam is being used as a tool by a fascist force.” It is important to note that Fatah is also a Muslim. Perhaps most shocking, though, were his words about the Muslim Brotherhood and its relation to the American presidency. He said: "instead of bringing victory over the fascist forces of the Muslim Brotherhood, we now recognize that their infiltration is right up to the American White House, but we can’t say that.”Watch these shocking words, here..He continued:“Today we are fighting another idea of Islamo-fascism that has shut our mouths and we can’t speak because we’re too scared that someone may turn around and call us a racist. And mind you, everyday as I speak, a few dozen Muslims would have been killed by now by these Jihadis.”Fatah went on to challenge Canadians to stand up against Islamists, warning that the “sponge-like spine“ people are showcasing when it comes to confronting the issue of radicalisation could lead to the end of ”civilization as we know it.” See him make this statement here: Aside from issuing warnings, Fatah tells Canadians to stand up for what’s right: here.So, considering these statements, the question still remains — Has the Muslim Brotherhood truly infiltrated the Obama White House? Fatah certainly seems to think so. His accusations, particularly those that focus on U.S. government infiltration, are worth exploring further.After all, how better to take down an opponent than to infiltrate U.S. leadership ranks? That, in fact, has been one of the Brotherhood’s plans for years. Cal Thomas writes:In 1991, a memo written by Mohamed Akram for the Shura Council of the Muslim Brotherhood spelled out the objective of the organization. Akram said the Muslim Brotherhood “must understand that their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging’ its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions.”Back in February, there was an uproar after James Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence, publicly stated that the Muslim Brotherhood is a “heterogeneous group“ that is ”largely secular.” His bizarre and contrary to evidential statements, which can be viewed below, were made only hours after the Brotherhood claimed that Sharia law is its ultimate goal here.Considering these bold calls to action and warnings (particularly the charge that the Muslim Brotherhood has worked its way into the White House) one wonders if there is legitimate evidence to backup these claims. And if so, then who, in particular, has infiltrated the U.S. government?Trevor Loudon has a post on his web site that asks these same questions, while providing two potential names of individuals some say have ties to the Muslim Brotherhood. Here, we will examine these individuals to see if they do, indeed, have any connection to the radical political group.The first name mentioned in the Loudon piece is Rashad Hussain, a lawyer and the U.S. Special Envoy to the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC). In February 2010, Thomes wrote that Hussain’s appointment to the OIC “should be of serious concern to Congress and the American public.” According to FrontPage Magazine: The Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Report took a look at Hussain’s official biography and found several concerning affiliations. The first is that in October 2000, Hussain spoke at a conference sponsored by the Association of Muslim Social Scientists, which was listed in an internal Muslim Brotherhood document as one of “our organizations and the organizations of our friends,” and the Prince Alwaleed Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding of Georgetown University, which receives Saudi funding and is directed by prominent Muslim Brotherhood advocate, John Esposito.Coincidentally, in 2003, Hussain was also a fellow at the Paul and Daisy Soros Foundation. Paul Soros is billionaire “philanthropist” George Soros’ brother. Additionally, FrontPage reported that Hussain “played a role” in the Muslim Students Association’s annual conference back in 2004. This group, too, was connected to the Muslim Brotherhood (in fact, it was founded by the Brotherhood) in 1963.It was at this conference that Hussain spoke with the daughter of Professor Sami Al-Arian. Al-Arian was convicted of being a leader of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad; he later admitted to being a Muslim Brotherhood member as well. At the event, Hussain defended Al-Arian and claimed that his legal ordeal was essentially “politically-motivated persecution.”But, it doesn’t end there. In May 2009, Hussein also spoke at a conference which was allegedly sponsored by Islamic Brotherhood affiliates. This being said, Hussein does support the term “Hamas terrorists” and there is no evidence that he has been sympathetic to the group. Still, Thomas writes, “…it is unsettling to see someone with Hussain’s background representing the United States to nations that may harbor or fund terrorists and want to destroy Israel and America.”The second name Loudon’s site mentions is Dalia Mogahed, who is coincidentally the Senior Analyst and Executive Director at the Gallup Center for Muslim Studies.In 2009, Obama nominated Mogahed to sit on his Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. According to DiscovertheNetworks.org, she co-authored the book “Who Speaks for Islam?: What a Billion Muslims Really Think” with the controversial Esposito. Here, though, is where much of the controversy surrounding her stems from: In early October 2009, Mogahed was interviewed on a British television program hosted by Ibtihal Bsis, a member of the extremist Hizb ut Tahrir party, which seeks to facilitate the non-violent destruction of Western democracy and the creation of a worldwide Islamic state governed by Sharia Law. Bsis and another guest (also a member of Hizb ut Tahrir) stated that Sharia should be “the source of legislation” for all nations in the world; they also repeatedly condemned the “man-made law” and the “lethal cocktail of liberty and capitalism” that existed in Western societies. Mogahed did not dispute any of their assertions.Critics were upset over Mogahed’s refusal to take a stand against these claims. But, even more bizarre was her discussion during the interview of the West’s take on Sharia law (and her defense of it). DiscovertheNetworks.org continues: Instead, Mogahed stated that the Western view of Sharia was “oversimplified,“ and that the majority of Muslim women around the world associate Islamic Law with ”gender justice.“ ”I think the reason so many women support Sharia is because they have a very different understanding of Sharia than the common perception in Western media,” she said.In early 2010, Tablet Magazine called Mogahed, “The most important person shaping the Obama Administration’s Middle East message.” In the article, concern over her potential inability to distinguish between radicals and moderates is cited. The Investigative Project on Journalism has written extensively on Mogahed as well, claiming that she has been a staunch defender of both the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA).She has claimed that it would not be fair be unfair to see these groups become “disenfranchised” because of “misinformation” that is perpetuated. She has been quoted claiming that “there is a concerted effort to silence, you know, institution building among Muslims. And the way to do it is [to] malign these groups. And it’s kind of a witch hunt.”Of course, neither of the individuals can be conclusively tied to the Muslim Brotherhood. Are their connections and associations curious? Certainly. But, there is no direct evidence that they are working with the Muslim Brotherhood.Instead, they appear sympathetic to the causes and goals that the political movement embraces. Still, Fatah’s warning to Canadians and recent history do expose the potential for unsettling connections within the administration. Earlier this year, Robert Spencer reiterated the Obama administration’s connections with the Muslim Brotherhood: Obama first reached out to the Brotherhood when he chose the leader of a Muslim Brotherhood-linked group that had been named an unindicted co-conspirator in a Hamas terror funding case to give a prayer during his inauguration ceremonies. Ingrid Mattson, then-president of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), offered this prayer at the National Cathedral on Obama’s Inauguration Day—despite the fact that the ISNA has admitted its ties to the Brotherhood…Obama didn’t ask Mattson to explain the ISNA’s links to the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas. On the contrary: He sent his senior adviser, Valerie Jarrett, to be the keynote speaker at the ISNA’s national convention in 2009.These connections, to a degree, are troubling. As time progresses, the media will need to hold the administration accountable in terms of the individuals it brings on board and their stated opinions on the tenets of radical Islam.Hmmmm.......WHO paid for Obama's studies at Harvard?Read the full story here.

  • Syrian activists call for general strike; defectors fight loyalist forces in the south.(Alarabiya).Activists called a general strike on Sunday to step up the pressure on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime as hundreds of army defectors in southern Syria fought tank backed loyalist one of the biggest armed confrontations in the nine-month uprising.Troops, mainly from the 12th Armored Brigade, based in Isra, 40-km (25 miles) from the border with Jordan, stormed the nearby town of Busra al-Harir. The sound of explosions and heavy machineguns was heard in Busra al-Harir and in Lujah, an area of rocky hills north of the town, where defectors have been hiding and attacking military supply lines, witnesses said.Meanwhile, in a civil disobedience campaign, anti-regime protesters were organizing sit-ins, the closure of shops and universities, and the strike.The Local Coordination Committees, which organizes protests on the ground in Syria, has predicted the campaign would snowball, and said the strike was “the first step in an overall civil disobedience” campaign to overthrow the regime.But the opposition Syrian National Council and activists have warned of a looming bloody final assault on the city of Homs in central Syria.Witnesses in Homs, besieged by government troops, have reported a buildup of troops and pro-regime “shabiha” militiamen in armored vehicles who have set up more than 60 checkpoints, the SNC said.The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights warned of “inhabitants’ fears of a large invasion of the city,” in a statement issued on Saturday.“The arrival of hundreds of armored vehicles to the city of Homs during the last two weeks estimated, according to witnesses,” to number more than 200, the Britain-based rights watchdog said in the English-language statement.“The spread of security leaks that the regime decided to extinguish the revolution in Homs within 72 hours by giving the security forces and Shabiha (militia) unlimited powers to not be merciful towards the unarmed civilians.”The United States, France and Britain have all warned Damascus against any bloody assault on Homs and said the regime would be held responsible for any heavy loss of life.The bloodshed, meanwhile, continues to claim more lives, with activists reporting more than 50 deaths since Friday when the Observatory said at least 41 civilians, including seven children, were shot dead by security forces.The Damascus region and Homs paid the heaviest price.And at least 14 civilians were reported killed Saturday, including four hit when security forces fired live ammunition and tear gas at mourners in Maaret Numan in Idlib province and three others hit by “machinegun fire in Hama.”On Friday, a U.S. State Department spokeswoman said: “It is extremely concerning that in places like Homs we have huge number of reports that they are preparing something large-scale.“They are not going to be able to hide who’s responsible if there is a major assault on the weekend.”Syria rejected that characterization of events: “There is no policy of crackdown,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Jihad Makdesi told Reuters in an e-mail. “The Syrian forces are there to protect civilians and maintain law and order that is breached by those who are carrying arms against the State.“The story of peacefulness of the protest is no longer a valid story in some places,” he said. “Syria needs evolution and not armed confrontation.”Separately, the official Syrian news agency SANA said the so-called BRICS group of developing economic powers - Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa - “reiterated its absolute rejection to any interference in Syrian affairs”.It cited a message from Russia’s U.N. ambassador Vitaly Churkin to the United Nations Security Council, which has been the forum for sharp divisions over Syria between the Western powers on the one hand and Russia and China on the other.Such differences, and Syria’s pivotal position at the heart of a web of regional conflicts, mean few see much possibility for the kind of Western military action seen this year in Libya.The Arab League has been pressing Syria, under threat of sanctions, to remove troops from its towns and let in observers. Egypt’s MENA news agency said on Saturday Arab foreign ministers will meet in Cairo at the end of the week to discuss a response to what it called a conditional Syrian acceptance of monitors.Syria, which blames the violence on armed “terrorist” gangs, wants the bloc to lift sanctions in return for allowing in observers.Turkey warned Syria on Friday it would act to protect itself if the crushing of protest threatened regional security and unleashed a tide of refugees on its borders.U.N. Human Rights Commissioner Navi Pillay has said more than 4,000 people have been killed in the government crackdown on dissent in Syria since the anti-regime protest movement broke out in March.Pillay is to brief the U.N. Security Council on Syria and the wider Middle East at a meeting on Monday.Read the full story here.

  • Wanted "Cucumber Fatwa Sheik"?Editorial: On Bikyamasr.com’s coverage of the “cucumber sheikh”.(BikyaMasr).The past week has seen unprecedented scrutiny of our work here at Bikyamasr.com. The responses, comments and emails we have received over the article, “Islamic cleric bans women from touching cucumbers, bananas for sexual resemblance,” have been numerous. As a young news organization striving to report the news in the most honest, straightforward and timely manner possible, we are concerned over the manner of both our reporting on this issue and the way our article was used by a number of global organizations to promote their own partisan agendas.Looking back, it was my own editorial oversight that failed in allowing this story to be published. Editorially, it was my duty to not publish this story before we could gather independent verification about the details behind the original Arabic article from Assawsana.com, the article that we referenced in writing our piece. Furthermore, I originally and mistakenly quoted Assawsana.com as “El-Senousa.com,” only furthering the confusion and mistakes involved in this report.As Editor of Bikyamasr.com, I am disappointed that I did not catch and hold this piece. The “Islamic cleric bans women from touching cucumbers, bananas for sexual resemblance,” article should not have run when it did. Arguably, it should not have been run at all. We should not have published about an “unnamed sheikh” in an unnamed European country unless we were able to garner more information on the issue, both on the sheikh himself and the news website the information was gathered from, independently.We realize that as a growing news organization with a growing reputation and readership, we have an increased responsibility to not only verify our own material at the highest levels, but further investigate the quotes and articles of other news organizations before referencing their work.This is our error. We apologize for the poor judgment on the matter. It is inexcusable. While the exact quote reported by Assawsana.com may well have been exactly what it was reported to be by that website, without a name and location behind this person and comment, it is difficult to find the information credible.We recognize our pitfalls and their repercussions. The fact that this story was quoted by a large number of news organizations across the globe shows that our error in judgment can have serious, detrimental effects. For this, we would like to apologize to our readers for the inadequate editorial judgment I, as Editor and Founder, made in this instance.This said, we will learn from our mistakes, as larger and more established news organizations have learned and continue to learn from theirs. Journalism has a steep learning curve, and as a news organization grows, the costs of learning become more difficult to bear. The repercussions of our lessons learned are becoming more serious and are imposing a higher cost on our readers.The reality, in this circumstance, is that we should not have sourced a piece published by a small website based on such limited, unverifiable information. We accept responsibility for doing so and are working to correct the aspects of our organizational culture which allowed this mistake to occur.We view this mistake as a significant learning opportunity for us; a chance to grow and improve the work we do here at Bikyamasr.com. As such, and as part of a greater expansion plan we have been developing for the past few months, we are working hard to expand our operations and bring a number of new, experienced editors and writers to our small editorial team. Despite this mistake, we will continue to maintain our independence and provide the best and most credible news possible to our readers.Reporting in a fair and accurate manner on Islam is a difficult process, and one that Bikyamasr.com takes very seriously. We will continue to push for more information on this story, from Assawsana.com and other sources, in order to interrogate the accuracy of their original article. If we cannot uncover more information, then we take it as our duty to make this clear and do everything in our power to spread that revelation to those who have sourced and quoted us this past week.At the end of the day, we employed poor judgment on this article, for which we apologize. We are working to correct our mistake and guarantee that the potential validity or invalidity of this story is quickly verified. We apologize to our readers for letting them down, and will strive to assure them with our future work that we are making fundamental, institutional changes to assure that mistakes like this do not happen again.Hmmmm......The "long arm of the 'Islamic' law"got hold of the editor?Read the full story here.


  • International Human Rights Day, but not for Kurds.(Firat).Arrests and imprisonment of Kurds sees no pause under Turkish ruling party AKP (Justice and Development Party). Yeasterday was International Human Rights Day. Yet in Turkey human rights are far from being respected. Figures speak clearly and it is always worth it to remind that figures mean people, human being with a name and a surname. The number of politicians and human rights defenders who were arrested within the scope of so-called KCK (Kurdish Communities Union) operations has reached about five thousand. The main target of this operation has been the BDP (Peace and Democracy Party) which still has five deputies in prison. One legally elected deputy, Hatip Dicle, was stripped off of his legal mandate after being elected. Five MYK (Central Executive Board) members, 12 PM members, 28 provincial and district chairs, 46 executives, 13 mayors and deputy mayors and 29 provincial council members of BDP have been arrested within the last seven months. An average of nine Kurds were taken into custody per day (since May 2011) and among them five were arrested as a result of the KCK operations carried out across the country. The pressure and destruction operations of the Turkish state against Kurds have remarkably increased in the period of the AKP government for the last ten years. This policy, which showed its face as unidentified murders in 1990’s, continues with intense arrests of the AKP government. Besides deputies, almost all executives and representatives of the BDP have been exposed to legal proceedings within this process. According to data by the party, 3,894 out of 7,748 detainees have been remanded in custody since 14 April 2009. Arrests, notably increasing in the post-election process of this year, mainly targeted the members of BDP municipalities and provincial councils.Read the full story here.

  • Senator John Kerry and U.S. Ambassador Visit FJP, Discuss Egypt's Democratic Transition, forget about Israel's existence.(Ikhwan).Dr. Mohamed Morsi, Chairman of the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP), Saturday 10 Dec, met Senator John Kerry, Chairman of the U.S. Congress Foreign Relations Committee, and Anne Patterson, U.S. Ambassador in Cairo.The meeting was also attended by Dr. Essam El-Erian, FJP Vice-Chairman, and Dr. Mohamed Saad Katatni, the party’s Secretary-General.At the beginning of the meeting, Dr. Mohamed Morsi welcomed Kerry and Patterson. He mentioned that Egyptian parliamentary elections are going in the direction of the popular will in Egypt, pointing out that the Egyptian people began to positively practice true democracy after the January 25 revolution and the fall of the former regime.John Kerry stated that he was not surprised at the progress and leading position of the FJP on the electoral landscape in Egypt, emphasising his respect for the public will in Egypt.A discussion followed, about the vision of the party on how to take the country out of the current economic crisis and the position of the party on international treaties and conventions signed by Egypt.Dr. Morsi said Egypt suffers from internal and external crises, and that the first step to remedy these crises is to put the proverbial Egyptian house in order and work for the independence of the legislative and executive authorities, starting with the Parliament.Dr. Morsi stated that the party is unlikely to make radical changes in the Constitution and laws dealing with investors, explaining that there is a consensus on the key points in the new Constitution, most important of which are: rights of citizenship, civil liberties and civil rights, while there is a need to make certain amendments in Chapter V regarding the powers of the President of the Republic and the regime in Egypt.Kerry welcomed the FJP vision and called on all Egyptian political stakeholders and parties to work to urgently apply essential mechanisms for the advancement of the economic situation to ensure the survival of the democratic experience in Egypt.Dr. Morsi mentioned that the FJP does not wish to pre-empt the right of the Constituent Assembly that will be formed and which has the responsibility and the right to set the political system appropriate for Egypt through consensus among participants in that Assembly.With regard to the position of the FJP on the international conventions signed by Egypt, Dr. Morsi stressed that Egypt is a big country with a long honourable history and plays an important role in Arab, Islamic and international issues, and therefore respects the conventions and treaties that were signed, calling for the U.S. administration to hear the peoples not to hear of them, asserting that America could play a role in the economic development and stability of various peoples of the world, if it wished. Hmmm....One thing all agreed upon was not to mention "ISRAEL"!Read the full story here.

  • Belgium -  Four family members convicted of 'honor' murder.(IIE).Via Knack (Dutch):
    On Friday the Court of Assize of Henegouwen convicted the four members of the Pakistani Sheikh family of the murder of Sadia Sheikh (22).Tariq Sheikh, Sadia's father, and her brother Mudusar were convicted by the jury,with aggravating circumstances since it was an honor murder and an attempted forced marriage. Parveen, Sadia's mother, and her sister Sariya, were also convicted of murder, with aggravating circumstances of honor murder, but were acquitted of the charges of attempted forced marriage.The jury convicted the four family members after three weeks of debates in court. Sadia was a senior of law at the Charleroi university college. She was murdered on October 22, 2007 in the Lodelinsart section of the city.Mudusar's conviction was based on his confession, and due to the fact that he committed the murder in order to restore the family's honor, which had been violated by his sister who, as a woman, refused to submit.Regarding father Tariq Sheikh there were various issues to his detriment, including the speedy conclusion of the forced marriage with a cousin in Pakistan via webcam and the administrative steps he took to officialize the marriage.Sariya was convicted due to ballistic analysis which linked her to the incident. The mother stated in her testimony that she preferred her daughter die rather than marry a non-Muslim.During the court case the prosecution and civil parties who had joined the suit, the Institute for Equality of Men and Women and the Union of Independent Health Services, tried to show that every member of the family played a significant role in Sadia's murder.The defense claimed that the investigation was blemished by the media attention to the crime. The family's lawyers also claimed that, except for Mudusar, there was enough doubt against conviction.Read the full story here.


  • H 4339 A House resolution to commend the nation of Israel.(EmbraceIsrael).South Carolina General Assembly - 119th Session, 2011-2012 - H. 4339.
Resolution sponsor: Representative Alan D. Clemmons, Et AlIntroduced in the House on June 2, 2011
Adopted by the House on June 2, 2011
A HOUSE RESOLUTION
TO COMMEND THE NATION OF ISRAEL FOR ITS RELATIONS WITH THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND WITH THE STATE OF SOUTHCAROLINA.
Whereas, Israel has been granted her lands under and through the oldest recorded deed as reported in the Old Testament, a tome of scripture held sacred and reverenced by Jew and Christian, alike, as the acts and words of God; and
Whereas, as the Grantor of said lands, God stated to the Jewish people in the Old Testament; in Leviticus, Chapter 20, Verse 24: “Ye shall inherit their land, and I will give it unto you to possess it, a land that floweth with milk and honey”; and
Whereas, God has never rescinded his grant of said lands; and
Whereas, along with the grant of said lands to the Jewish people, God provided for the non-Jewish residents of the land in commanding that governance must be in one law for all without drawing distinction between Jewish and non-Jewish citizens, as contained in Leviticus 24:22; and
Whereas, the Nation of Israel declared its independent control and governance of said lands on May 14, 1948, with the goal of reestablishing their God-given lands as a homeland for the Jewish people; and
Whereas, the United States of America, having been the first country to recognize Israel as an independent nation and as Israel’s principal ally, has enjoyed a close and mutually beneficial relationship with Israel and her people; and
Whereas, indeed, Israel is the United States of America’s greatest friend in the Mideast; and
Whereas, the roots of Israel and the roots of the United States are so intertwined that it is difficult to separate one from the other under the word and protection of almighty God; and
Whereas, there are those in the Middle East who have sought to destroy Israel from its inception as a nation; and
Whereas, those same haters of Israel also hate, and seek to destroy, the United States of America; and
Whereas, the State of South Carolina and the nation of Israel have enjoyed cordial and mutually beneficial relations since 1948, a friendship that continues to strengthen with each passing year. Now, therefore,
Be it resolved by the House of Representatives:
That the members of the South Carolina House of Representatives, by this resolution, commend the nation of Israel for its relations with the United States of America and with the State of SouthCarolina.
Be it further resolved that the members of this body support Israel in their natural and God-given right of self-governance and self-defense upon their own lands, recognizing that Israel is neither an attacking force nor an occupier of the lands of others, and that peace can be afforded the region only through a united Israel governed under one law for all people.
Be it further resolved that a copy of this resolution be forwarded to the Speaker of the House of Representatives of each of South Carolina’s sister states within the United States of America with the request and recommendation of this body that a similar resolution to that stated herein be proposed within their respective bodies.Hmmm....Hear,hear!Read the full story here.

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