Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Norway State Broadcaster failed to distinguish between Hamas propaganda and the truth, Broadcast Council says-Aftenposten

8/28/14, "Norwegian succeeded not enough to distinguish the parties' war propaganda from documented information," Aftenposten

 "The morning was devoted to discussing NRK's ​​Middle East coverage for that 50 complaints about the matter came to the Broadcasting Council. After several hours of discussion the council came to the conclusion that NRK has been too little critical of Hamas, they have failed to distinguish war propaganda and verifiable information, and NRK should disseminate more about the underlying conflict than what is done. 
The statement also takes NRK improved their coverage through the summer, and that coverage thus became more nuanced.

After Aftenposten publicized case last week, came in a large number of additional complaints about Gaza coverage. To begin with were 25 complaints in the stack, all criticism of Palestinian sympathy with the national TV channel.
A further 25 complaints came to the last week before the meeting, most of which take the opposite stance and defends correspondents Sidsel Wold and Odd Karsten Tveit.
Former foreign editor at Aftenposten, Kjell Dragnes, defended Broadcasting Corporation during his introduction with the words "Do not shoot the pianist if you do not like music."
- NRK's ​​coverage has been good. It does not differ from international media such as BBC and CNN.... 

He believes that one does not need to set special requirements to NRK that the national broadcaster, but that general journalistic principles apply state channel in the same way as other media.
- The distinction between commentary and news is not always one to observe in practice as a foreign correspondent....
Journalist in Today's Market, Bjørn Gabrielsen, was more critical in his introduction, although he also believed that NRK's ​​coverage did not differ enormously from the international media.
- The western world is incredibly keen Israel, choosing to cover them so close is a political choice. Interest Palestinians do not seem to be for the Palestinians themselves. When it dies Palestinians in a refugee camp, it barely covered, he said....
He also pointed to the problem of mixing of commentary and reportage, combined with the absence of analysis, especially military analysis.
Aftenposten has not had contact with Odd Karsten Tveit criticism. 
Also Elin Ørjasæter, a member of the Broadcasting Council, was critical, both to the overall balance and the individual correspondents statements. 
- It has been a lopsided coverage, and we have learned enough about Hamas, she says during the meeting. -...

Council statement:
"Broadcasting Council has received about 50 complaints about the coverage of the Gaza war this summer. The vast majority have been critical. The complaints both single statement, sources and balance in general....
Broadcasting Council believes that NRK insufficiently critical put the spotlight on Hamas' role. In the early stages of the conflict failed Norwegian well enough to distinguish propaganda from documented information.
The Council notes with satisfaction the Norwegian way got the more votes and that coverage was more nuanced.
Broadcasting Council encourages NRK to a greater extent to convey background information about the Middle East conflict.
The Council expects that NRK has an awareness of boundary between news reporting and comment activity." via Pamela Geller


Summary of Aftenposten article by dk news:

9/3/14, "3/10 Norwegian State Broadcasting Council condemns Norwegian State TV for not being critical enough concerning Hamas, "failed to distinguish war propaganda and verifiable information," Source

"After several hours of discussion the Broadcasting Council decided to criticise NRK's (Norwegian State Broadcasting) Middle East coverage. ...

After several hours of discussion the council came to the conclusion that NRK has not been critical enough concerning Hamas, and that they have failed to distinguish war propaganda and verifiable information, and NRK should provide more information about the causes of the conflict....
Former foreign editor at Aftenposten, Kjell Dragnes, defended NRK with the words 'Do not shoot the pianist if you do not like music.' '- NRK's coverage has been good. It does not differ from international media such as BBC and CNN.'"

The Broadcasting Council believes that NRK has been insufficiently critical about Hamas' role."  


Image from Unknown origin


Former AP correspondent on pro-Hamas bias of media:

8/26/14, "An Insider’s Guide to the Most Important Story on Earth,", Matti Friedman

"A former AP correspondent explains how and why reporters get Israel so wrong, and why it matters."

"The fact is that Hamas intimidation is largely beside the point because the actions of Palestinians are beside the point: Most reporters in Gaza believe their job is to document violence directed by Israel at Palestinian civilians. That is the essence of the Israel story. In addition, reporters are under deadline and often at risk, and many don’t speak the language and have only the most tenuous grip on what is going on. They are dependent on Palestinian colleagues and fixers who either fear Hamas, support Hamas, or both."


Tuesday, September 2, 2014

In 2007 George W. Bush said his Energy Act "confronts global climate change," that oil adds "greenhouse gas emissions," "makes us vulnerable to terrorists." Mandated more biofuels, ended many US lightbulbs, all to reduce CO2 as pledged "at UN climate change meeting in Bali"

3/12/14, "Climate Change Not a Top Worry in U.S.," Gallup Poll, R. Riffkin. "Worries Differ Greatly Between Political Parties"


12/19/2007, "President Bush Signs H.R. 6, the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007," George W. Bush Whitehouse Archives, U.S. Dept. of Energy, Washington, D.C.

Speaker Pelosi and Sen. Maj. Leader Reid are pleased

"THE PRESIDENT: Two years ago I was pleased to stand with members -- many of whom are here -- to sign a bill that was the first major energy security legislation in more than a decade. At the time I recognized that we needed to go even further. And so in my State of the Union I proposed an aggressive plan to reduce oil consumption of gasoline by 20 percent over 10 years.

Today we make a major step with the Energy Independence and Security Act. We make a major step toward reducing our dependence on oil, confronting global climate change, expanding the production of renewable fuels and giving future generations of our country a nation that is stronger, cleaner and more secure. (Applause.) 

I do welcome members of the Cabinet who've joined us. I particularly want to thank the Speaker and the Leader. I appreciate your leadership on this important issue. (Applause.) Speaker Pelosi is here with Congressman Steny Hoyer, House Majority Leader; welcome, Mr. Leader. (Applause.) Leader Reid has brought members of the Senate with him: Senator Inouye, Senator Bingaman, Senator Stevens -- I think that's Senator Domenici there is disguise -- (laughter and applause) -- looking pretty handsome, isn't he? (Applause.) I appreciate Congressman Dingell and Congressman Markey, Congressman Gordon -- these are all leaders on their respective committees that help bring this bill to my desk. I also want to welcome all the other members of Congress who have joined us. (Applause.) 

One of the most serious long-term challenges facing our country is dependence on oil -- especially oil from foreign lands. It's a serious challenge. And members of Congress up here understand the challenge and so do I. Because this dependence harms us economically through high and volatile prices at the gas pump; dependence creates pollution and contributes to greenhouse gas admissions [sic]. It threatens our national security by making us vulnerable to hostile regimes in unstable regions of the world. It makes us vulnerable to terrorists who might attack oil infrastructure. 

The legislation I am signing today will address our vulnerabilities and our dependence in two important ways. First, it will increase the supply of alternative fuel sources. Proposed an alternative fuel standard earlier this year. This standard would require fuel producers to include a certain amount of alternative fuels in their products. This standard would create new markets for foreign products used to produce these fuels. This standard would increase our energy security by making us less vulnerable to instability -- to the instability of oil prices on the world market.

The bill I sign today takes a significant step because it will require fuel producers to use at least 36 billion gallons of biofuel in 2022. This is nearly a fivefold increase over current levels. It will help us diversify our energy supplies and reduce our dependence on oil. It's an important part of this legislation, and I thank the members of Congress for your wisdom. (Applause.)

Second, the legislation also -- will also reduce our demand for oil by increasing fuel economy standards. (Applause.) Last January, I called for the first statutory increase in fuel economy standards for automobiles since they were enacted in 1975. The bill I'm about to sign delivers on that request. It specifies a national standard of 35 miles per gallon by 2020, which will increase fuel economy standards by 40 percent and save billions of gallons of fuel. This bill also includes an important reform that I believe is essential to making sure that we realize this strategy. It allows the Department of Transportation to issue what are known as "attribute-based standards," which will assure that increased fuel efficiency does not come at the expense of automobile safety. This is an important part of this bill, and again I thank the members for taking the lead. (Applause.) 

The bill also includes revisions to improve energy efficiency in lighting and appliances. * It adopts elements of the executive order I signed requiring federal agencies to lead by example in efficiency and renewable energy use.

Taken together, all these measures will help us improve our environment. It is estimated that these initiatives could reduce projected CO2 emissions by billions of metric tons. At the U.N. climate change meeting in Bali last week our nation promised to pursue new, quantifiable actions to reduce carbon emissions. Today we're doing just that. The legislation I'm signing today will lead to some of the largest CO2 emission cuts in our nation's history. (Applause.)...

And there's more we can accomplish together....And so we're going to spend money on new research for alternative feedstocks for ethanol. I mean, we understand the hog growers are getting nervous because the price of corn is up. But we also believe strongly that research will enable us to use wood chips and switchgrass and biomass to be able to develop the ethanol necessary to help us realize the vision outlined in this bill.

I appreciate very much the fact that we're going to fund additional research on new battery technologies to power plug-in hybrids. We're spending money on innovative ways to capture solar power. We're making -- providing incentives for nuclear energy. If we're serious about making sure we grow our economy and deal with greenhouse gases, we have got to expand nuclear power. (Applause.) 

It is going to take time to transition to this new era. And we're still going to need hydrocarbons. And I hope the Congress will continue to open access to domestic energy sources -- certain parts of the outer continental shelf in ANWR. And to protect us against disruptions in our oil supply, I ask Congress to double the current capacity of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

With these steps, particularly in the bill I'm about to sign, we're going to help American consumers a lot....We'll strengthen our security by helping to break our dependence on foreign oil. We'll do our duty to future generations by addressing climate change. 

And so I thank the members of Congress. I appreciate the fact that we've worked together, that we can show what's possible in addressing the big issues facing our nation. This is a good bill and I'm pleased to sign it. 

(The bill was signed.) (Applause.)"

Image: "President George W. Bush signs into law H.R. 6, the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, Wednesday, Dec. 19, 2007, at the U.S. Department of Energy in Washington, D.C. White House photo by Joyce N. Boghosian"

*The phase out of US incandescent light bulbs was begun by George W. Bush:

12/13/13, "Light bulb ban set to take effect," CNN,

"Light bulb manufacturers will cease making traditional 40 and 60-watt light bulbs-- the most popular in the country -- at the start of 2014. This comes after the controversial phasing out of incandescent 75 and 100-watt light bulbs at the beginning of 2013....

The end of old light bulbs will likely anger some consumers that are already faced with higher prices for a variety of goods. But it will also tick off tea party activists since the ban is the result of the final phase of government-mandated efficiency standards.

The rules were signed into law by President George W. Bush in 2007. They are designed to address gross inefficiencies with old light bulbs -- only 10% of the energy they use is converted into light, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, which has a handy fact sheet about the changes. The rest is wasted as heat."...


Question: Why do coal companies such as Murray Energy give one penny to Establishment Republicans? Romney stood outside a coal plant in 2003 and said, "That plant kills people". For two decades John Boehner ("I'm not a scientist") has allowed imaginary CO2 danger to grow into a $1 billion a day "industry." Pretty good for something that doesn't exist. 


Comment: Some have said "Republican ideology" supports belief in natural climate change but not "human caused global warming." Aside from the hitch that there are two Republican Parties today, "Republican" George W. Bush's above speech and policies are very pro human caused global warming. Front and center are CO2, Mid East terror, the UN, ethanol, biofuel, and enormous taxpayer dollars distributed to vested interests. Unfortunately, as of 2014, ethanol has turned into a global tragedy. On the bright side, predicted increases in global temperatures haven't happened in 15+ years, the US has developed its natural gas and oil shale industries, and it has Canada has a fuel trading partner. As a Gallup Poll found in March 2014, human caused "climate" dangers are at the bottom of Americans' lists of concerns. Gallup found Republicans in particular believe the science that CO2 isn't warming the planet or that even if it were, only China can do anything about it. The slight hitch in this case is the two Republican Parties. Establishment Republicans such as George Bush agree with Democrats on most major issues, which they're free to do. We in the rank and file are free not to follow them:

3/12/14, "Climate Change Not a Top Worry in U.S.," Gallup Poll, R. Riffkin

"Worries Differ Greatly Between Political Parties"

"Americans from the two major political parties express different levels of worry about a number of the issues tested, including climate change and the environment. Among Democrats and Democratic leaners, 45% say they worry a great deal about the quality of the environment. This percentage drops to 16% among Republicans and Republican leaners.

Gallup finds a 26-percentage-point difference in worry about climate change, with Democrats again more likely than Republicans to worry a great deal."...


8/13/2014, "Who are the climate change deniers?" by in Economist/YouGov Poll,

"Republicans are far more skeptical of human-caused climate change than most Americans."...


Comment: Canada could be an even greater fuel trading partner but the Left prefers to continue using Mid East sources. If "The Right" existed in the Beltway it might be different. Establishment Republicans can't label themselves Democrat in public because they'd lose $1billion every four years running fake candidates who have no chance and no intention of winning. What would the NY Times write about if they had to admit the US has only one functioning political party, the Democrats, and that the country is a soft dictatorship?


Romney in 2003 outside a coal plant with anti-coal activists, "That (coal) plant kills people." Romney's voice at :17

10/7/2011, "Press Release - Romney and Obama: Carbon Copies,"

"Romney's environmental policies and advisors now being used by President Obama"
"Mitt Romney and President Obama are carbon copies when it comes to environmental policies, as evident in the video "Romney and Obama: Carbon Copies"

The Wall Street Journal recently investigated Mr. Romney's liberal environmental record:

Just days after his 2002 election, Mr. Romney hired Douglas Foy, one of the state's most prominent environmental activists, and put him in charge of supervising four state agencies. ... With Mr. Foy by his side, Mr. Romney joined activists outside an aging, coal-fired plant in 2003 to show his commitment to the emissions caps. 

"I will not create jobs or hold jobs that kill people, and that plant, that plant kills people," he said. [1]
Mr. Romney later implemented job-killing carbon caps for Massachusetts:

On Dec. 7, 2005, the Romney administration unveiled the final orders. "These carbon emission limits will provide real and immediate progress in the battle to improve our environment," then-Gov. Romney said in a press release touting Massachusetts as "the first and only state to set CO2 emissions limits on power plants." [1]

Two former Romney environmental advisors are now members of the Obama Administration.
Gina McCarthy, the Environmental Protection Agency's top air pollution official, was Mr. Romney's "green quarterback." [2]

John Holdren, Obama's science czar, advised Romney on implementing his greenhouse gas policy and was highlighted in the 2005 press release announcing Massachusetts' carbon caps. [3, 4]


[1] Romney Environment Push Is Fresh Target for His Rivals, Wall Street Journal, 10/6/11,
[2] (Obama) EPA Official Was Romney's 'Green Quarterback,' National Journal, 9/22/11,
[3] Romney Announces Strict New Clean Air Regulations To Take Effect January 1, Press Release, 12/7/05,"


Monday, September 1, 2014

US and Iran unlikely allies in Iraq battle for Amerli-NY Times

8/31/14, "U.S. and Iran Unlikely Allies in Iraq Battle," NY Times, Tim Arango, Azam Ahmed, Baghdad, 9/1 print ed.

"With American bombs raining down from the sky, Shiite militia fighters aligned with Iran battled Sunni extremists over the weekend, punching through their defenses to break the weekslong siege of Amerli, a cluster of farming villages whose Shiite residents faced possible slaughter.

The fight in northern Iraq appeared to be the first time American warplanes and militias backed by Iran had worked with a common purpose on a battlefield against militants from the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, even though the Obama administration said there was no direct coordination with the militias.

Should such military actions continue, they could signal a dramatic shift for the United States and Iran, which have long vied for control in Iraq. They could also align the interests of the Americans with their longtime sworn enemies in the Shiite militias, whose fighters killed many United States soldiers during the long occupation of Iraq.

The latest expansion of American military operations reflects how seriously Iraq has deteriorated since the withdrawal of American forces in 2011. But any decision to support the Shiite militias, who have proven more adept than the American-trained Iraqi Army, would come with its own set of challenges.

The militants from the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria were able to storm into Iraq in recent months in part because Sunnis felt so disenfranchised by the Shiite-led government of former Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki. If the United States is seen to be strengthening the hand of militias that terrorized Sunnis during the sectarian war of 2006 and 2007, the minority Sunnis might balk at participating in America’s long-term goal of a unity government.

Or, in a worst-case scenario, more Sunnis could align with ISIS fighters.

David Petraeus, a former top American military commander in Iraq who led the United States troop surge in 2007, months ago warned against such possibilities as the Obama administration, reeling from the fall of Iraq’s second largest city, Mosul, weighed military action against ISIS.

“This cannot be the United States being the air force for Shia militias or a Shia-on-Sunni Arab fight,” he said at a security conference in London in June. “It has to be a fight of all of Iraq against extremists, who do happen to be Sunni Arabs.”

The United States was careful to note on Sunday that it was working on Amerli with its allies: regular Iraqi Army units and Kurdish security forces, which the United States has been supporting with air power since President Obama authorized airstrikes several weeks ago.

“Any coordinating with the Shiite militias was not done by us — it would have been done by the ISF,” a senior administration official said on Sunday, referring to the Iraqi Security Forces. But it is well known that the Shiite militias have been fighting alongside the army in recent months as the threat from ISIS became clear.

A second administration official, meanwhile, said the United States is not working directly with Tehran. “We are working with the Iraqi government and with the Kurdish pesh merga in Iraq,” the official said. “That’s it.”
Security officials on Sunday said that Amerli, a town about 105 miles north of Baghdad whose estimated 15,000 residents are mostly Shiite Turkmen considered infidels by ISIS, was not fully liberated but that the combined forces had cleared several villages from the militants.

Last year ISIS exploited the chaos of the Syrian civil war to take control of large expanses of territory there, before sweeping into Iraq, its birthplace, as a greater force and erasing the border between the two countries. Its explosion onto a turbulent region has threatened the breakup of Iraq and forced a reluctant President Obama to re-engage more fully in the Middle East.

For overwhelmingly Shiite Iran, the rise of ISIS — and its aim of creating a Sunni caliphate in the region — was alarming because of the possible threat to Iran itself. The militants’ sudden successes also posed a more immediate threat of further destabilizing two countries — Iraq and Syria — that have been close to Tehran and helped it extend its power in the region.

In a reflection of the region’s increasingly tangled politics, the Obama administration is considering taking the fight against ISIS to Syria.

The United States and Iran have opposite goals there: Iran has been an important supporter of President Bashar al-Assad, while the United States has sought his ouster by supporting moderate rebels. But any American military action against ISIS in Syria could end up bolstering Mr. Assad — and furthering Iran’s regional agenda.
Iran’s president, Hassan Rouhani, at one point went so far as to suggest the United States and Iran might work together to stem the chaos in Iraq, but Iran’s supreme leader seemed unenthusiastic about the idea, and on Saturday, Mr. Rouhani said it would not be possible to cooperate in the fight against regional terror groups. It was unclear if his unexpectedly harsh criticism of the United States on Saturday was a sign of a change in attitude, or a political maneuver to either quiet domestic critics or to give Tehran wiggle room in negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program.

When President Obama first authorized airstrikes in Iraq several weeks ago, the justification was to protect American civilians in Erbil, the Kurdish capital, which was being threatened by ISIS fighters, and to support humanitarian aid drops on Mount Sinjar, where thousands of Yazidis, members of an ancient minority sect, had sought refuge from the advancing militants.

More recently, pressure had increased to help the besieged residents of Amerli, as officials worried that ISIS would carry out a mass killing of civilians. Besides the airstrikes, the United States also provided airdrops of food and water to the thousands of besieged civilians there.

The Obama administration has tried to avoid being seen as taking sides in a sectarian war, because the Shiite militias are especially feared by Iraq’s Sunnis.

But for the weekend at least, the realities on the ground appeared to override any concerns of effectively supporting the militias.

ISIS has been rampaging through Iraq, beheading prisoners, carrying out massacres of Shiites and expelling hundreds of thousands of residents. The Shiite militias have been accused of some recent abuses against Sunnis, but so far have avoided large-scale revenge killings.
Among the militias fighting for Amerli are Asaib Ahl al-Haq, considered the most fearsome of Iraq’s Shiite militias, and a group linked to the Shiite cleric Moktada al-Sadr, one of the Americans’ most unyielding enemies during the occupation. Those groups are supported by Iran.

Asaib, a militia that was a particularly fierce opponent of the United States as it was winding down its military role in Iraq, was said to have taken on the most prominent role in the fighting for Amerli, in Salahuddin Province.

“I would like to thank the jihadists from Asaib Ahl al-Haq, as they are sacrificing their lives to save Amerli,” said Mahdi Taqi, a member of the provincial council in Salahuddin.

Naeem al-Aboudi, the spokesman for Asaib, said, “today is a great happiness and victory for all Iraqis. Iraqi security forces, volunteers and resistance brigades have proved their ability to defeat ISIS.”

He played down the American role and said, “We don’t trust Americans at all. They had already let down the Iraqi Army.” He added, of the Americans, “We don’t need them.”

As night fell Sunday, the fighting was still raging in Qaryat Salam, a village to the north of Amerli.

At a makeshift forward base, set up amid half-constructed homes and the hulk of a new soccer stadium, Kurdish pesh merga forces fired a barrage of artillery, mortars and rockets. A line of trucks roared into the area, their headlights smeared with mud to dull the brightness. An assortment of Kurdish fighters, Iraqi Army soldiers and Shiite militia members, who seemed to be working together in a highly coordinated way, passed by.

Several Iranian military advisers were also seen, according to a pesh merga fighter.

“We are cooperating with the pesh merga and other military forces,” said Abd Kadum al-Mousaw, a militia fighter. “From each force there is a commander who is a member of a higher committee that makes decisions.”

Pesh merga commanders said they had cleared about half of the village, but were facing stiff resistance from the militants, “who were fighting like madmen.”"


Sunday, August 31, 2014

Al Qaeda posts photo of 45 UN peacekeepers captured in Syria, 8/31/14, NY Times

8/31/14, " بيان حول احتجاز 45 من قوات الأمم المتحدة لمراقبة فض الاشتباك ""

8/31/14, "Al Qaeda Affiliate Claims Capture of U.N. Peacekeepers in Syria," NY Times, Ben Hubbard, Istanbul
"The Syrian branch of Al Qaeda has acknowledged that it captured 45 United Nations peacekeepers in southern Syria, saying that they were being held in retaliation for what the group called the United Nations’ failure to help the people of Syria during the country’s civil war.

The group, the Nusra Front, also accused the peacekeeping force, which has monitored the demarcation line between Syria and the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights since 1974, of protecting Israeli-controlled territory while doing nothing to stop the killing on the Syrian side.

The statement, released late Saturday, contained a group photo of the captured peacekeepers, who are from Fiji, as well as a photograph of their identification cards. The statement said they were being treated well and were given food and medical care, but it issued no demands for their release."...


Archbishop of York pleads with UK Prime Minister to accept many more refugees from Iraq and Syria, conditions still leading to genocide. UK has only taken 50 victims of ISIS-BBC

8/31/14, "UK must offer asylum to terror refugees - Archbishop of York," BBC

"The Archbishop of York has urged the government to do more to offer asylum to Christians and others being persecuted by Islamic State terrorists.

He warned the "bloodthirsty" extremists could end up committing genocide as the conflict in Iraq and Syria intensifies...

Archbishop Sentamu told BBC One's Sunday Morning Live programme that he did not want to embarrass the prime minister, but he thought the UK needed to follow the lead of other countries and do more about asylum.

"Please act quickly, because we may end up with a Rwandawhere people are really killed in huge, huge numbers," he said. 
"They've already shown their capacity to be bloodthirsty. The beheading should tell us that they are a ruthless group of people, and somehow they've got to be stopped. And if you don't stop them, you may end up with a genocide."

Archbishop Sentamu said the world needed to show it would not stand for the IS extremists' butchery, bullets and beheading, which he said was doomed to failure. 

He has been holding a week-long prayer vigil, praying on the hour every hour, from 06:00 to 18:00 BST. 

The government has said it judges asylum on a case-by-case basis

The UK has so far granted asylum to over 3,000 Syrians already in the UK, and to at least 50 of the refugees currently in camps in the Middle East after fleeing areas taken over by IS."....

Image: "The Archbishop of York has urged the government to do more to offer asylum to Christians and others being persecuted by Islamic State terrorists." ap


Saturday, August 30, 2014

Not to worry, Obama admin. does have definite 'strategy,' has been apparent since at least 2008 but not well publicized because many wouldn't like it. It's to make Iran dominant in Middle East and North Africa, in part to punish US for its historically mean role in the Middle East

8/29/14, "Latest Big Lie: ‘We Have No Strategy’," Michael Ledeen, PJ Media

"They DO have a strategy, but they prefer to appear indecisive.  That’s because the strategy would likely provoke even greater criticism than the false confession of endless dithering.

The actual strategy is detente first, and then a full alliance with Iran throughout the Middle East and North Africa.  It has been on display since before the beginning of the Obama administration.  During his first presidential campaign in 2008, Mr. Obama used a secret back channel to Tehran to assure the mullahs that he was a friend of the Islamic Republic, and that they would be very happy with his policies.  The secret channel was Ambassador William G. Miller, who served in Iran during the shah’s rule, as chief of staff for the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, and as ambassador to Ukraine.  Ambassador Miller has confirmed to me his conversations with Iranian leaders during the 2008 campaign.

Ever since, President Obama’s quest for an alliance with Iran has been conducted through at least four channels:  Iraq, Switzerland (the official U.S. representative to Tehran), Oman and a variety of American intermediaries, the most notable of whom is probably Valerie Jarrett, his closest adviser.  In recent months, Middle Eastern leaders reported personal visits from Ms. Jarrett, who briefed them on her efforts to manage the Iranian relationship.  This was confirmed to me by a former high-ranking American official who says he was so informed by several Middle Eastern leaders.

The central theme in Obama’s outreach to Iran is his conviction that the United States has historically played a wicked role in the Middle East, and that the best things he can do for that part of the world is to limit and withdraw American military might, and empower our self-declared enemies, whose hostility to traditional American policies he largely shares.

If we look at the current crisis through an Iranian lens, our apparent indecisiveness is easier to understand, for it systematically favors Iran’s interests. Tehran’s closest ally is Syrian dictator Bashar Assad. If Assad were to be overthrown by opposition forces hostile to Iran, it would be a devastating blow to Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, who has committed tens of thousands of fighters (from Hezbollah, the Revolutionary Guards and the Basij) to shore up the Damascus regime. 

Everything Iran does in the region revolves around the necessity of preserving Assad’s tyranny.

Obama surely understands this. It therefore made no sense to bomb Syria in the otherwise baffling about-face on the “red line” a year ago. In like manner, the refusal to take decisive action today against the Islamic State caters to Iranian and Syrian concerns. Remember that ISIS was supported by Iran and Syria as a weapon against anti-Assad and anti-Iranian forces (from the Kurds to the FSA), none of whom is receiving serious American support.

It is exceedingly unlikely that Mr. Obama will do anything that would threaten Assad’s rule or Iran’s power.  To do so would be tantamount to abandoning his core strategy of creating a U.S.-Iranian alliance that would make Tehran the major regional power and Washington a friendly kibbitzer and adviser.

It is even more unlikely that Mr. Obama and his spokespeople will confess to actually having a strategy, because of the political firestorm that would result. Better to be thought a fool than to remove all doubt, after all." via Instapundit


Two among comments to this article at PJ:



If you cobble together the secret meetings with Hamas, the attempt to take out Mubarak and Gaddafi and install the Muslim Brotherhood, the behind the backs of Congress secret deal with Iran to get nukes, the resupply of masterminds in exchange for a traitor, the abandonment of Iraq and Afghanistan, and the utterly contemptuous attitude toward Israel...and weave them through the atrocities in Benghazi, throwing open our borders and calling terrorism workplace violence and police indeed see the clear outlines of a strategy.

By a traitor class.

And Jarrett and Malley are much more involved than many originally believed.

Surrounded by pompous white buffoons...Kerry, Hagel, Biden and protected by the clown prince Reid...the assault on Judeo-Christians goes on unabated.

There is a strategy. And Ayers, Soros, Radhid Khalidi, Louis Farrakhan, Jeremiah Wright, Don Warden and Michael Moore are cheering it on.

There is an overthrow in the works. The Bogey Man has a plan."
17 hours ago Like (19) Link To Comment

I have thought pretty much the same thing since obama gutted the sanctions against Iran. He has ignored and isolated the Saudis, Jordan and increasingly Egypt in order to favor Iran, Syria and Hezbollah. Valerie Jarret has wielded an enormous influence over our feckless pres. And the country will pay dearly for this mis-guidance down the road."
17 hours ago Like (8) Link To Comment


Added: The idea to destroy the US from within has been around a long time, Obama's just doing a better job of it. It's accepted that he supports Islam but there are a variety of individuals and entities that comprise the Muslim world. For the above article to be 100% true, you'd have to believe Obama was faking a bunch of big things. You'd have to believe his "red line" about Syria was just for show, and that he was all along faking his support for the Muslim Brotherhood and Qatar. In any case, punishing the US can be done from many angles.

The Green movement is another way to punish Americans today for alleged injustices that occurred before they were born. Greens say Americans must pay reparations for starting the Industrial Revolution. Obama's Green friend Van Jones is on the board of 'Green For All' a group closely tied with the EPA which agrees with "Green for All' that minority groups are unjustly  impacted by (alleged) global warming so extra money must be transferred to them. (Even if global warming existed, China is the only country who could stop it, but has no desire or reason to do so. Much preferable is to watch the US destroy itself with self-hatred). 'Green For All's' website clearly states its goal is to "disrupt the current economy," ie. under the guise of 'CO2 danger' punish millions of innocent Americans for alleged injustices that occurred before they were born:

"Green For All acknowledges the need to disrupt the current economy, because we understand that our

current economy was based upon human trafficking,

the exploitation of labor, and

violent racism." 

The "disruption" couldn't have happened without cooperation of the political class over several decades.

8/27/14, "EPA Chief: CO2 Regulations Are About ‘Justice’ For ‘Communities Of Color’," Daily Caller, M. Bastasch


Mr. Hensarling, you've known for the 12 years you've been in the Beltway that we wanted a fence on the US southern border. What sane person wouldn't? It's not something you found out "30 seconds" ago. Nor is it complicated. Build a fence. Period. If that's too hard for you, quit.

Rep. Jeb Hensarling was first elected in Nov. 2002, is currently in his 6th term, was in office during George Bush's amnesty push. We remember if Hensarling doesn't

8/28/14, "In town halls, U.S. lawmakers hear voter anger over illegal migrants," Reuters, by Gabriel Debenedetti, Dallas

Hensarling, 2013
"When Republican Rep. Jeb Hensarling sat down with colleagues and constituents at a recent Chamber of Commerce lunch in Dallas, the first question he faced was whether Congress planned to address immigration policy and a burgeoning border crisis.

"I'm supposed to do this in 30 seconds?" he joked, noting the issue's complexity. While he was optimistic about long-term prospects for dealing with border security and immigration, he said, "between now and the end of this Congress, I'm a little less sanguine about it."

It has been a question heard repeatedly by lawmakers this month in "town hall" district meetings punctuated - and sometimes dominated - by concerns and angry outbursts over immigration policy and the crisis caused by a flood of child migrants at the southwestern border in recent months.

Those summer town halls have provided lawmakers a first-hand glimpse of growing discontent among Americans over U.S. immigration policy. Seventy percent of Americans - including 86 percent of Republicans - believe undocumented immigrants threaten traditional U.S. beliefs and customs, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll conducted in mid-July.

Those fears have been exacerbated by the recent wave of illegal child migrants from Central America. An issue that had been simmering is now hotting up as voters prepare to go to the polls in congressional elections due in November.

The anger and frustration expressed in the town halls suggests there will be a fierce debate when U.S. lawmakers return to Washington on Sept. 8 and take up proposals to address a flood of child migrants crossing the southwestern U.S. border.

While conservative anger has not approached the levels seen during the healthcare debate in August 2009, when town halls across the country were frequently disrupted, members of both parties have been confronted on the issue.

From border states like Texas to less likely hot spots like Oregon, Colorado, and New York, Democratic and Republican lawmakers have heard a steady stream of questions and complaints from voters - most pushing for a crackdown on illegal immigration and some worried about what they see as Washington's inaction.

"I hear it everywhere I go," said Oregon Republican Greg Walden, who travels the country in his role as chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee.

"The anger is palpable," Hensarling, a six-term conservative congressman who is often identified by colleagues as a possible next Speaker of the House, told Reuters.

Local media reported police were called to a meeting in Hollister, California hosted by Democratic Rep. Sam Farr after an audience member shouted at Farr and the crowd about the dangers posed by the child migrants. 

A town hall hosted by Democrat Jared Polis of Colorado featured constituents shouting at Polis and each other, and applauding those who contradicted him, on a range of issues, most prominently immigration, a local newspaper said.

"We've had seven town halls, and immigration is the number one issue that comes up," Polis told Reuters.

A series of executive actions on immigration that President Barack Obama plans to unveil next month could further intensify the debate. The policy changes are likely to fuel Republican accusations that Obama is overstepping his authority.


Conservative concerns over immigration have been merging with Republican worries about Obama's healthcare, economic and foreign policies, Oregon lawmaker Walden said.

"It's morphed into something bigger than a debate over fixing our broken immigration system - it's a piece of the overall sense that things are on the wrong track in this country," he said.

Hensarling said "there's a lot of fear about that, about a president who has a pen and a phone, but doesn't seem to have a copy of the Constitution." 

But Polis said even left-leaning voters are growing frustrated by the lack of progress in Congress on a long-term policy fix. A bipartisan June 2013 immigration reform bill that passed the Senate has been stalled in the House.

Opinion polls show concerns about immigration extend to every region of the country, although they are most acutely felt in the southwestern states near the Mexican border....

Only three Republican Senate contenders - New Hampshire's Scott Brown, Michigan's Terri Lynn Land, and Arkansas' Tom Cotton - have run advertisements about immigration. Vulnerable incumbents have largely avoided potentially controversial town halls that could force them to answer tough questions on the topic.

National Democrats believe roughly two dozen House districts could see immigration play a role in November’s result, and pundits frequently point to Colorado’s competitive Senate race as the likeliest immigration battleground.

But the candidates in that contest have sparred over other issues, and Republican Cory Gardner earlier this month voted with a mostly Democratic bloc not to repeal Obama’s 2012 measure providing a stay of deportations to young undocumented migrants."

Image: House Financial Services Committee Chairman Representative Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), Sept. 12, 2013, Reuters


Both George Bush and Obama attempted to change US immigration laws in their second term. Both were completely detached from ordinary Americans:

6/2/2007, "Too Bad," WSJ, Peggy Noonan 

"What political conservatives and on-the-ground Republicans must understand at this point is that they are not breaking with the White House on immigration. They are not resisting, fighting and thereby setting down a historical marker -- "At this point the break became final." That's not what's happening. What conservatives and Republicans must recognize is that the White House has broken with them. What President Bush is doing, and has been doing for some time, is sundering a great political coalition. This is sad, and it holds implications not only for one political party but for the American future.

The White House doesn't need its traditional supporters anymore, because its problems are way beyond being solved by the base. And the people in the administration don't even much like the base. Desperate straits have left them liberated, and they are acting out their disdain. Leading Democrats often think their base is slightly mad but at least their heart is in the right place. This White House thinks its base is stupid and that its heart is in the wrong place.

For almost three years, arguably longer, conservative Bush supporters have felt like sufferers of battered wife syndrome. You don't like endless gushing spending, the kind that assumes a high and unstoppable affluence will always exist, and the tax receipts will always flow in? Too bad! You don't like expanding governmental authority and power? Too bad. You think the war was wrong or is wrong? Too bad.

But on immigration it has changed from "Too bad" to "You're bad."

The president has taken to suggesting that opponents of his immigration bill are unpatriotic -- they "don't want to do what's right for America." His ally Sen. Lindsey Graham has said, "We're gonna tell the bigots to shut up." On Fox last weekend he vowed to "push back." Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff suggested opponents would prefer illegal immigrants be killed; Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez said those who oppose the bill want "mass deportation." Former Bush speechwriter Michael Gerson said those who oppose the bill are "anti-immigrant" and suggested they suffer from "rage" and "national chauvinism."

Why would they speak so insultingly, with such hostility, of opponents who are concerned citizens? And often, though not exclusively, concerned conservatives? It is odd, but it is of a piece with, or a variation on, the "Too bad" governing style. And it is one that has, day by day for at least the past three years, been tearing apart the conservative movement.

I suspect the White House and its allies have turned to name calling because they're defensive, and they're defensive because they know they have produced a big and indecipherable mess of a bill -- one that is literally bigger than the Bible, though as someone noted last week, at least we actually had a few years to read the Bible. The White House and its supporters seem to be marshalling not facts but only sentiments, and self-aggrandizing ones at that. They make a call to emotions -- this is, always and on every issue, the administration's default position -- but not, I think, to seriously influence the debate.

They are trying to lay down markers for history. Having lost the support of most of the country, they are looking to another horizon. The story they would like written in the future is this: Faced with the gathering forces of ethnocentric darkness, a hardy and heroic crew stood firm and held high a candle in the wind. It will make a good chapter. Would that it were true!

If they'd really wanted to help, as opposed to braying about their own wonderfulness, they would have created not one big bill but a series of smaller bills, each of which would do one big clear thing, the first being to close the border. Once that was done -- actually and believably done-- the country could relax in the knowledge that the situation was finally not day by day getting worse. They could feel some confidence.

And in that confidence real progress could begin.

The beginning of my own sense of separation from the Bush administration came in January 2005, when the president declared that it is now the policy of the United States to eradicate tyranny in the world, and that the survival of American liberty is dependent on the liberty of every other nation. This was at once so utopian and so aggressive that it shocked me. For others the beginning of distance might have been Katrina and the incompetence it revealed, or the depth of the mishandling and misjudgments of Iraq.

What I came in time to believe is that the great shortcoming of this White House, the great thing it is missing, is simple wisdom.  

Just wisdom -- a sense that they did not invent history, that this moment is not all there is, that man has lived a long time and there are things that are true of him, that maturity is not the same thing as cowardice, that personal loyalty is not a good enough reason to put anyone in charge of anything, that the way it works in politics is a friend becomes a loyalist becomes a hack, and actually at this point in history we don't need hacks.

One of the things I have come to think the past few years is that the Bushes, father and son, though different in many ways, are great wasters of political inheritance. They throw it away as if they'd earned it and could do with it what they liked. Bush senior inherited a vibrant country and a party at peace with itself. He won the leadership of a party that had finally, at great cost, by 1980, fought itself through to unity and come together on shared principles. Mr. Bush won in 1988 by saying he would govern as Reagan had. Yet he did not understand he'd been elected to Reagan's third term. He thought he'd been elected because they liked him. And so he raised taxes, sundered a hard-won coalition, and found himself shocked to lose the presidency, and for eight long and consequential years. He had many virtues, but he wasted his inheritance.

Bush the younger came forward, presented himself as a conservative, garnered all the frustrated hopes of his party, turned them into victory, and not nine months later was handed a historical trauma that left his country rallied around him, lifting him, and his party bonded to him. He was disciplined and often daring, but in time he sundered the party that rallied to him, and broke his coalition into pieces. He threw away his inheritance. I do not understand such squandering.

Now conservatives and Republicans are going to have to win back their party. They are going to have to break from those who have already broken from them. This will require courage, serious thinking and an ability to do what psychologists used to call letting go. This will be painful, but it's time. It's more than time."