Thursday, March 31, 2011

Van Jones (and fellow travelers) , the day after The World Changed Forever:

h/t Gateway Pundit

With No Fly Zone Kinetic Military Friends Like These. . .

New York Crimes:

NATO Warns Rebels Against Attacking Civilians

WASHINGTON — Members of the NATO alliance have sternly warned the rebels in Libya not to attack civilians as they push against the regime of Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi, according to senior military and government officials.

As NATO takes over control of airstrikes in Libya and the Obama administration considers new steps to tip the balance of power there, the coalition has told the rebels that the fog of war will not shield them from possible bombardment by NATO planes and missiles, just as the regime’s forces have been punished.

“We’ve been conveying a message to the rebels that we will be compelled to defend civilians, whether pro-Qaddafi or pro-opposition,” said a senior Obama administration official. “We are working very hard behind the scenes with the rebels so we don’t confront a situation where we face a decision to strike the rebels to defend civilians.”

The warnings, and intense consultations within the NATO-led coalition over its rules for attacking anyone who endangers innocent civilians, come at a time when the civil war in Libya is becoming ever more chaotic, and the battle lines ever less distinct. They raise a fundamental question that the military is now grappling with: Who in Libya is a civilian?

In the early days of the campaign, the civilian population needing protection was hunkered down in cities like Benghazi, behind a thin line of rebel defenders who were easily distinguishable from the attacking government forces.

That is no longer always the case. Armed rebels — some in fairly well-organized militias, others merely young men who have picked up rifles to fight alongside them — have moved out of Benghazi in an effort to take control of other population centers along the way, they hope, to seizing Tripoli.

Meanwhile, fresh intelligence this week showed that Libyan government forces were supplying assault rifles to civilians in the town of Surt, which is populated largely by Qaddafi loyalists. These civilian Qaddafi sympathizers were seenchasing rebel forces in nonmilitary vehicles like sedans and trucks, accompanied by Libyan troops, according to American military officers.

The increasing murkiness of the battlefield, as the freewheeling rebels advance and retreat and as fighters from both sides mingle among civilians, has prompted NATO members to issue new “rules of engagement” spelling out when the coalition may attack units on the ground in the name of protecting civilians.

It was unclear how the rules are changing — especially on the critical questions surrounding NATO’s mandate and whether it extends to protecting rebels who are no longer simply defending civilian populated areas like Benghazi, but are instead are themselves on the offensive.

“This is a challenge,” said a senior alliance military officer. “The problem of discriminating between combatant and civilian is never easy, and it is compounded when you have Libyan regime forces fighting irregular forces, like the rebel militias, in urban areas populated by civilians.”
Front Page Mag:

Iran and the Final Grand Jihad
Posted by Ryan Mauro on Mar 31st, 2011The documentary produced by Ahmadinejad’s office makes it clear that the Iranian regime sees itself as religiously-commanded to lead a united Arab coalition to destroy Israel in the near future. Interestingly, it said that the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood, though it is Sunni, is “in accordance with the Hadith.” The uprisings in the region are being seen as a green light for a new offensive to begin in the Middle East and Islamist forces are moving quickly to maximize their gains.

The immediate flashpoint in this new jihad is in Bahrain. The population is 70 percent Shiite but is ruled by a pro-American, Sunni Royal Family. Massive protests threatened to topple the regime that were responded to with deadly violence condemned by Iran. The Bahraini regime was forced to ask for intervention by the Gulf Cooperation Council and about 1,200 soldiers from Saudi Arabia and 800 from the United Arab Emirates came to its rescue. The Shiite opposition in Bahrain considers these forces to be an “occupation.” The leader of the hardline Haq opposition group flatly stated that the Saudi intervention gives the opposition “the right to appeal for help from Iran.” It is happy to oblige.

Hezbollah has offered support to the Shiite uprising in Bahrain and a website registered by the Iranian government is signing up volunteers to wage jihad against the GCC forces, including “martyrdom” operations that will be assigned via email. The website says that the fighters will be divinely guided by “the redeemer” who is behind the revolutions in Egypt, Tunisia and Egypt and will lead the war against Israel, the U.S. and the enemy Arab governments. It is not clear who this “redeemer” is, but it is further proof that the Iranian regime believes it is fulfilling the commandments of Allah. The website says that a total of 1,858 volunteers have signed up, 60 percent of which are from Iran and 18 percent are from Bahrain. This isn’t just talk. Qatar has seized two Iranian ships near Bahrain loaded with weapons.

At the same time, there are relatively small but consistent protests in Saudi Arabia’s Eastern Province, which is a Shiite majority area where most of the country’s oil resides. A successful Shiite uprising in nearby Bahrain would escalate the situation and the Iranian regime has repeatedly condemned the Saudi treatment of its Shiite minority. The aforementioned documentary produced by Ahmadinejad’s office states that the death of Saudi King Abdullah, either by natural causes or assassination (as called for in the film), is foretold in the Hadith as a sign that this final grand jihad is to begin. King Abdullah is 86 years old and is in very poor health.

It is not difficult to sense the fear instilled in the Saudi Royal Family. It has gone on a massive spending binge to appease its population. It announced a $36 billion aid package earlier this year and just announced a significant larger budget to finance projects around the country, including the upgrading of mosques; new offices for the religious police; the hiring of 60,000 more security personnel; bonuses for government workers; the creation of an anti-corruption agency; the construction of low-income apartments and much more. To Iran, this is more proof that it is about to fulfill prophetic destiny.

The documentary also asserts that the revolution in Egypt and the Muslim Brotherhood’s gains are part of this End Times scenario. Iran and the Brotherhood come from different branches of Islam but their struggles are tied. A senior Brotherhood official recently attended a conference in Tehran where he praised Ahmadinejad and said the region needed more leaders like him. The March 19 vote in favor of the constitutional amendments is a boon to the Islamists, as it paves the way for parliamentary elections as early as June and presidential elections as soon as September. This gives minimal time for political forces opposed to the Brotherhood to mobilize and campaign.

In Jordan, protests are smaller in comparison to the rest of the region but they are slowly getting larger, are consistently held and clashes are increasing. Here, too, the Muslim Brotherhood has a very powerful presence. The inevitable removal of Yemeni President Saleh, a staunch enemy of Iran, is also opening doors to the Islamists. The Muslim Brotherhood’s affiliate, Islah, will gain politically and the Yemeni government will be too weak to stand in the way of the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels, whose fight is referred to as a “holy revolution” in the regime’s documentary. The Houthis stated recently that their goal is the overthrow of the Yemeni government.

The regime’s film does not say that Al-Qaeda is part of this prophetic jihad and Osama Bin Laden’s picture is on a wall of Iran’s enemies. This does not mean that the terrorist group won’t benefit from this instability. Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula is already expanding its base in Yemen, seizing a town, a strategic mountain and a weapons factory after the police presence in the area was reduced to cope with the government’s crisis. In Libya, at least one rebel commander belongs to the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, which is tied to Al-Qaeda, and admits that about 25 of his fighters battled Coalition forces in Iraq. He also says that he was arrested in Pakistan in 2002 for fighting in Afghanistan against invading forces. CNN describes the Muslim Brotherhood branch in Libya as “energized” despite its lack of a presence in Benghazi.

This does not mean that everything is following the Iranian regime’s End Times vision. The uprising in Syria is clearly not in Iran’s interest and neither are the protests in the Gaza Strip and the declining popularity of Hamas. Recent terrorist attacks on Israel may be a desperate attempt to stabilize these situations and/or could be an opening salvo in this envisioned final jihad. Public pressure and protests in Sudan have been enough for President Omar Bashir, an ally of Iran, to announce he will not stay in office beyond his term. And of course, there is the opposition the Iranian regime also faces, though the film indicates that this is seen as a sign of the Hidden Imam’s reappearance as well.

Almost everywhere the Iranian regime looks in the region, it sees vindication of its apocalyptic worldview and signs that the final grand jihad it is meant to lead is imminent. The revolutions in the area are inspiring to Arab peoples seeking justice and freedom but they are just as inspiring to Iran and its Islamist allies. The Middle East is entering a dangerous new phase.

God Is Dead. . .Again. . .

American Spectator:


By on 3.31.11 @ 6:07AM

The war on organized religion usually manifests itself in battles around Christian holidays like Christmas and Easter, yet minor skirmishes abound at other times as well. The latest foray emerges once again from the realm of that field which refers to itself as science. The headline from the BBC blared, "Religion may become extinct in nine nations, study says."

The piece is full of the psychobabble and gibberish we've come to know and hate from the so-called scientific community; that which offends the ears of the sensible but so impresses the foolish. I won't bore you with the details, but the main thrust of the piece comes from a study that purports to base its findings on census data suggesting that as more and more folks list themselves as religiously unaffiliated, "social groups that have more members are going to be more attractive to join." In other words, it just ain't cool to worship anything other than the dictates of your own "lifestyle."

Yet, almost as bad as the junk science of the article, were the comments of some of our intelligent youths, whose advanced technological skills are only surpassed by their grammar and spelling:

The sooner religon is consigned to history the better. There is no place in modern society for myths and legends, (except as a good story). I cannot understand how otherwise intelegent people can belive in a supreame being that controls all of our lives. This is just a throwback to the uneducated trying to rasionalise he workings of nature by inventing something to attribute it to!

Of course, we can't believe in something that billions of people have held sacred for thousands of years, but utter credence and faith must be invested in computer modules; just ask Al Gore, a champion at rationalizing the workings of nature by inventing things. You'd think that this tired shibboleth -- that man can have any effect on nature -- would have been laid to rest by recent seismic events in Japan, Haiti, and elsewhere. The whole global warming canard has always reminded me of the old saying: everybody talks about the weather, but nobody ever does anything about it!

Now, I do agree that religious affiliation may be on the wane, but why? It's because organized religion is too hard. What passes for modern religion is much more appetizing. In your zeal to save the planet, promote world peace or simply to "give back to the community," you can live your life your way, using the gifts God gave you for whatever function you might designate and, most importantly, you can declare, loudly and often, that you are a "good person," without any nagging prelates to dispute you. Give praise and glory to God? Let him get a Facebook page and do it himself, like everybody else.

And worst of all, for Christians, there's that unpleasant situation with the Cross. Why waste valuable party time to meditate on something so bloody, cruel, and violent when you can just zip on over to the nearest multiplex and watch the latest vampire flick? The problem is, Christianity requires the heart of a child in matters of faith, and complete maturity in everything else; the polar opposite of the state of too many people in this world today. Indeed, more are concerned with maintaining an appearance of eternal youth than seeking eternal life.

Then there are the sociopolitical difficulties. After all, in this enlightened age, who can really take seriously the often embarrassing and inconvenient exhortations like this, from Pope Benedict XVI:

May you find the courage to proclaim Christ, "the same, yesterday, and today and for ever" and the unchanging truths which have their foundation in him. These are the truths that set us free! They are the truths which alone can guarantee respect for the inalienable dignity and rights of each man, woman and child in our world, including the most defenseless of all human beings, the unborn child in the mother's womb.

Christianity is founded on love; the sort that promotes as its greatest application the sacrifice of one's life for one's friends; a love that seeks to give and not take. Sadly, in this country and in most of the world, this kind of love only manifests itself in religious or military life. Likewise, marriage -- the real kind, not that which is grounded in sexual gratification -- is supposed to reflect this total giving of oneself, which is open to procreation; the way in which two become one. The antithesis of this, of course, is a culture that promotes abortion and euthanasia; the elimination of those who are all-dependent on this sacrificial love.

Yet, despite all this, true religion will never be extinct as long as the yearning of the human spirit to rise to its Creator remains in men's hearts. The danger though, is whether or not, amid all the noise and technology, men will be able to listen to his call.


Turkey Says It Seized Illegal Iran Arms Shipment
Thursday, 31 Mar 2011 03:58 PM

UNITED NATIONS — Turkey has informed a U.N. Security Council panel that it seized a cache of weapons Iran was attempting to export in breach of a U.N. arms embargo, according to a document Reuters obtained Thursday.

Security Council diplomats said the report of the seizure from an Iranian cargo plane reflected positively on Turkey, which some U.S. and European officials say has taken a lax approach to implementing international sanctions against Iranian financial institutions.

The report to the council's Iran sanctions committee, which oversees compliance with the four rounds of punitive steps the 15-nation body has imposed on Iran over its nuclear program, said a March 21 inspection turned up the weapons, which were listed as "auto spare parts" on the plane's documents.

The plane was bound for Aleppo, Syria, and was given permission to pass through Turkish airspace provided it made a "technical stop" at Diyarbakir airport, the report said.

It said a search of the Iranian "YasAir Cargo Airlines" Ilyushin-76 revealed a number of "prohibited military items" — 60 Kalashnikov AK-47 assault rifles, 14 BKC/Bixi machine guns, nearly 8,000 rounds of BKC/AK-47 ammunition, 560 60-mm mortar shells, and 1,288 120-mm mortar shells.

"The above-mentioned items were seized and have been stored in a military warehouse in Diyarbakir," said the report, which was sent to the Iran sanctions committee on March 29.

The Turkish seizure was the latest in a string of reported Iranian violations of the sanctions imposed on Iran for refusing to halt a nuclear enrichment program that the United States, European Union and their allies suspect is part of a weapons program. Tehran says its nuclear program is peaceful.

Colombia's U.N. Ambassador Nestor Osorio, who chairs the Iran sanctions committee, told the Security Council last week that "the increase in the number of reported sanctions violations is a matter of serious concern."

Security Council diplomats said it was not clear whether Iran had stepped up its efforts to skirt the sanctions or countries have become more vigilant in enforcing them.

"Kudos for Turkey," a council diplomat told Reuters.

It was not clear whether Syria was the intended final destination of the weapons. There were no indications on the weapons crates of who the recipient was or where the shipment would have gone had it not been intercepted by the Turks.

"The crew were detained and interrogated by the Diyarbakir State Prosecutor," the report said. "They denied any knowledge about the prohibited items on board, as well as the identity of the consignor or consignee."

The crew were released and allowed to return to Tehran on March 22, but the case is still being investigated, it said.

The United States and Israel have said they suspect Iran uses Syria as a conduit for weapons transfers to militant groups in Lebanon and the Gaza Strip. Iran and Syria deny the charges.

Last week, U.N. diplomats said authorities in Singapore and South Korea had seized items banned under the sanctions against Iran's nuclear and missile programs.

One of the items — aluminum powder seized in Singapore — was originally thought to be from North Korea, though investigators now believe that the powder came from a Chinese firm, diplomats told Reuters. The other item — phosphor bronze discovered in South Korea — also came from a Chinese company.

There was no evidence that the Chinese government was involved, though diplomats said the incidents raised questions about Chinese export controls and concerns about the readiness of some Chinese companies to defy the sanctions regime.

Britain has complained publicly about a shipment of Iranian weapons allegedly bound for Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan.

On March 15, Israeli naval commandos seized a cargo ship in the Mediterranean carrying what Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said were Iranian-supplied weapons intended for Palestinian militants in Gaza.

Nigerian authorities complained to the sanctions committee about an Iranian arms shipment it seized last year that Tehran said was a legitimate trade deal with Gambia. Nigeria is prosecuting one of two Iranians allegedly involved in the deal.

This Week On The Gathering Storm: Midnight Rider!

Listen to The Gathering Storm Radio Show, hosted by WC and Always On Watch. The show broadcasts live every Friday beginning at noon, Pacific Time, for 30 minutes.

The call-in number is 646-915-9870.

Callers welcome!

Our scheduled guest this week is Midnight Rider.

Listen to the April 1, 2011 edition of The Gathering Storm Radio Show, live or later, by CLICKING HERE.
Bonnie Raitt
Devil Got My Woman

Rory Block
Crossroad Blues

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

An example of slapdash depictions of Islam in early 80s comics

Earlier, I'd spoken about an example of Marvel's troubling depictions of Islam in the early 2000s. For this post I've researched, I thought to focus on another example from earlier. Much earlier, in fact, from 1981. It involves 2 minor characters who first turned up in the Incredible Hulk, Sabra, a heroine of Israeli background, and, more importantly, the Arabian Knight, from the House of Saud. Both of them were conceived by Bill Mantlo and Sal Buscema (the brother of the late John Buscema), Sabra appearing in issues #256 and Arabian Knight in #257.

The problem with the latter's depiction begins most noticeably with his marriage. As seen in the following info on the Comic Boards Marvel Guide:
Arabian Knight
Real Name: Abdul Qamar
Occupation: Bedouin chief, adventurer
Other Aliases: None
Place Of Birth: Aqabah, Saudi Arabia
Marital Status: Married (to three women)
Known Relatives: Maya (wife), Rana (wife), Almira (wife), Faisal (son), Hassim (son)
Group Affiliation: Former member of Desert Sword
Source Of Powers: None
Powers/Abilities: Athletic, good hand-to-hand combatant, possesses a magic carpet and magic sword (capable of emitting beams of magical concussive force)
Cause of Death: Killed by Humus Sapien
First Appearance: Incredible Hulk Vol.2 #257
Final Appearance: Thunderbolts #57
He was a Muslim, and yes, it was depicted in superficial terms, but more noticeable here was his polygamy, to three wives. It's galling enough if any depiction of Islam, in and of itself, was made to look as though it's not a problem, if he kept up his polygamy and nobody ever argued against it, I'm afraid that is troubling. The scholars of Judaism long outlawed polygamy (and stoning of adulterers), but in many Muslim regimes, and even concealed in some enclaves in the west, Muslim polygamy still runs amok.

It gets worse. Back in 1982, there was a miniseries, largely obscure today, called Contest of Champions that featured both Sabra and Arabian Knight, among several other heroes/vigilantes. I found a post on Gone and Forgotten, a blog detailing mostly obscure items from the heyday of comics, and the following description - and panel - don't make me very happy:
First round to Grandmaster's team, now we're off to some western Ghost Town where She-Hulk, Captain Britain and El Defensor face off against Sabra, Iron Man and the Arabian Knight. Sabra and the Knight get into a little snit here, because of the historic differences between Israel and … Arabian. Notice, however, that Sabra apparently has no problem being on the same team as BLITZKRIEG, a German superhero actually named after a Nazi war tactic! SURE WHY WOULD SHE??

Anyway, this one's got the hotbed of poltical and social activism at work, which is sort of a theme running through the series - you'll note, of course, the rather famous (as far as this site's concerned, anyway) casual confrontation between Shamrock and Captain Britain on the waiting room floor. Well, this chapter not only has Arabian Knight and Sabra acting like an old married couple, but Arabian Knight and Captain Britain through a few back and forth, and for the heck of it, She-Hulk and Sabra wax on male chauvanism. For an eight-year old, this is heady poltical awareness.
Yes, but how clearly is it conveyed? As the panel with Arabian Knight and Iron Man signals, Abdul's got a dislike for the "Chosen". Yet as the "snit" suggests, they may not make things much better with Sabra, suggesting there's more than bit of moral equivalence at work here. Undoubtably, no mention of the war Muhammed decreed against the Israelites and other infidels during the 7th century, nor how he declared Jews to be the offspring "of apes and pigs". And why indeed is Sabra fighting alongside a German with such a disgusting codename? Or, why was said German given that kind of a codename? Answer: bad writing, one of the reasons this peculiar miniseries has long been so obscure, and also why we can't really appreciate Sabra and She-Hulk's criticism of chauvinism.*

And as much as I'd like to admire that Shellhead is criticizing Abdul for the hatred he's got towards a Jewess (and I do like that he uses the term "nationality" instead of "religion" in reference to Ruth), I sadly suspect that he doesn't level any criticism against Arabian Knight for adhering to a religion and Koran/Hadith founded by a violent, child-molesting savage, that being Muhammad. I suspect he doesn't even take him to task for polygamy, which I doubt Tony Stark would be depicted doing once he got married. And why do I get the feeling any criticism that does turn up of his opinions on Jews/Israelis is muted at best? Of course, it's the fault of the writers, and not just Mantlo, who introduced both Sabra and Arabian Knight back in the day, but also Mark Gruenwald and Steve Grant, co-scripters of this silly mess. One could say the depiction of Arabian Knight symbolizes a failure to properly and courageously criticize other cultures for what we in the west find inappropriate and incompatible with our values.

As someone who makes an effort to ponder how fictional characters cannot be faulted for how they're depicted and characterized, that's why I can't fault Arabian Knight for being so badly conceived. I can only fault the writers like Mantlo, Gruenwald and Grant. And where I'm galled is that Mantlo for one would go into all this without doing any proper research, and if he failed to depict polygamy with clear negativity.** Especially considering what the false prophet taught about women.

Since this time, Abdul Qamar has been killed off in Thunderbolts in the late 1990s, and 2 other characters took up the role of Arabian Knight. I guess the real disappointment is that he never got to become an apostate before his death, and renounce any Islamic indoctrinations he was under. Similarly, it's very sad that Christian Arabs and Pakistanis have never been given a fictional character in their image to admire, nor has there ever been a story about a heroic apostate in mainstream comics.

Simply put, some things just can't be dealt with using kid gloves.

* And even that may be muted, because misogyny is what describes the Religion of Peace much more accurately. In other words, a serious subject was dumbed down badly.

** The same can be said for if Qamar's 3 wives wear chadors but no mention is made of whether this is a choice or obligation. It makes no difference if this took place in the book of the Hulk, whose depiction could mark him as a semi-lefty; if his alter ego Bruce Banner wasn't allowed to criticize Qamar either, then it's still as failed a view of the middle east as ever.

Why I'd rather not have a Facebook account

There's been a just outrage this week over a page formed by anti-Israelists, calling for palestinians to take up weapons against Israel. As told here, it's been removed:
JERUSALEM (AP) - Facebook on Tuesday removed a page calling on Palestinians to take up arms against Israel, following a high-profile Israeli appeal to the popular social-networking site.

The affair highlighted how Facebook is increasingly involved in charged political conflicts, balancing between protecting freedom of expression and defending against hate speech.

The page, titled "Third Palestinian Intifada," had more than 350,000 fans when it was taken down. It called on Palestinians to take to the streets after Friday prayers on May 15 and begin an uprising. "Judgment Day will be brought upon us only once the Muslims have killed all of the Jews," a quote from the page read.

Facebook said the page began as a call for peaceful protest, even though it used the term "intifada," which it said has been associated with violence in the past.

"However, after the publicity of the page, more comments deteriorated to direct calls for violence," said Andrew Noyes, Facebook's public policy communications manager. He said the creators of the page eventually made calls for violence as well.

"We monitor pages that are reported to us, and when they degrade to direct calls for violence or expressions of hate - as occurred in this case - we have and will continue to take them down."
Or do they? As the following info tells:
Palestinian Authority activists have recreated the Third Intifada page that was banned by Facebook on Tuesday in response to thousands of member requests.

An Israeli Cabinet minister, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) and a massive Internet campaign were only some of the measures used to pressure the popular social networking site into removing the page, which promoted violence against Jews in Israel.

But the story doesn't end there, because angry Palestinian Authority sponsors of the page ensured the fight would continue.

A Muslim page similarly entitled "Subscribe now to the Palestinian Intifada," on its logo but which is innocuously entitled "Make the Prophet Number One on Facebook" on the heading is listed under Non-profit Organizations.

Easily the largest and most popular Muslim page on Facebook, it espouses peace and offers myriad beneficent comments about Allah and Islam's founder, the Prophet Muhammed. But the Rassoul Allaah page also directs readers to directs readers to a wealth of links to other pages promoting the Third Intifada and a massive attempt to carry out the destruction of the State of Israel.

By Wednesday afternoon, the page had garnered more than three million -- 3,293,252 -- votes of support from Facebook members around the world.

Organizers have summoned millions of Arabs from across the Middle East to march into Israel and forcibly attempt to implement a de facto “Right of Return,” the Arab euphenism for the mass immigration of several million Arabs.

The date for this march has been set for May 15 – the anniversary of what the Arabs refer to as the “Nakba” or “Tragedy“ -- the date of the establishment of the State of Israel.

Although some of the pages promoting this campaign have warned its readers to maintain a peaceful demeanor, others do not bother with such niceties.

At least one is a complete re-creation of the original Third Palestinian Intifada page that was removed.
If Facebook hasn't removed this new page yet, and more importantly, the offending "activists" behind it, then how do we know they're serious? Facebook's interface discourages me already since it's got very complicated controls, but this news is the real problem.

And that's why I don't think I'll ever want a Facebook account, because I can't bring myself to support a social network site that's allowing this kind of monstrous activism to run around.
Fifth Issue of English-Language Jihadist Magazine "Inspire" Released - The cover article is titled "The Tsunami of Change."
On March 29, 2011, Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula's (AQAP) media wing Al-Malahem released the fifth issue of the English-language jihadist magazine "Inspire." The cover article of this issue is titled "The Tsunami of Change."

Reports about the contents of this issue will be published by MEMRI over the coming day. 
"Change" where have we heard that before?

 Source .

Threats Claim Nuclear Bombs Hidden All Over U.S.

From CBS Chicago:

CHICAGO (CBS 2) – The threats came in the mail and to date, there have been 25 letters that warn of nuclear bombs destroying America.

People who got them called the FBI and CBS 2′s Kristyn Hartman learned, the Bureau’s Chicago office is leading the investigation.

FBI Special Agent Andre Zavala said, “Yes, they alarmed a lot of people.”

Attorney Tracy Rizzo was alarmed. A number of days ago, an envelope, with a Chicago postmark and a hand-written address to her private investigations firm, came in the mail.

The letter inside said, “The Al-Qaeda organization has planted 160 nuclear bombs throughout the U.S. in schools, stadiums, churches, stores, financial institutions and government buildings.” It also said, “This is a suicide mission for us.”

The writer, who claims to be Osama Bin Laden, tells the reader the nukes are remotely controlled. “It was clear the writer wanted to scare me,” said Rizzo, “Yes, it frightened me.” Rizzo was one of eight people in the Chicago area to contact the FBI.

“There are items in the letter that lead us to believe it is a hoax,” said Zavala. “There are several demands documented that aren’t fully coherent.”

He said much of what’s in the message doesn’t add up, but in a post 9-11 world, the FBI can’t let it go – even if it does appear to be a hoax.

“The FBI investigates every element. We can’t take that chance,” said Zavala.

So, why the threats?

The writer alluded to how families in Afghanistan have to live. The FBI said it will find that writer, and when it does, he could face 5 to 10 years in prison for each letter mailed. Anyone who’s received a similar letter should call the FBI.

So, If We Take The Juicy Parts Of Three Different Articles On The Same Subject

we begin to find a kernel of truth. . .

Barack Obama ponders arming ‘Freelance

jihadists’ a boost for al-Qaeda says

terrorist leader

THE US is considering giving weapons to rebels battling Muammar Gaddafi's regime in Libya, despite concerns that some could have terrorist links to al-Qa'ida and Hezbollah.

In one of three interviews yesterday, Mr Obama said the rebels were "saying the right things" so far.
"Most of them are professionals, lawyers, doctors, people who appear to be credible," he told CBS.

A former leader of Libya’s al Qaeda affiliate says he thinks “freelance jihadists” have joined the rebel forces, as NATO’s commander told Congress on Tuesday that intelligence indicates some al Qaeda and Hezbollah terrorists are fighting Col. Moammar Gadhafi’s forces.

Former jihadist Noman Benotman, who renounced his al Qaeda affiliation in 2000, said in an interview that he estimates 1,000 jihadists are in Libya.

Western and Arab officials say the example set by young Arabs seeking peaceful political change is a counterweight to al-Qaeda's push for violent militancy and weakens its argument that democracy and Islam are incompatible.

But al-Awlaki, who has been linked to a series of terrorist plots, said the removal of anti-Islamist autocrats meant Islamic fighters and scholars were now freer to discuss and organise.

"Our mujahideen brothers in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and the rest of the Muslim world will get a chance to breathe again after three decades of suffocation," he wrote, using a term that refers generally to Islamic guerrilla groups or holy warriors.

"For the scholars and activists of Egypt to be able to speak again freely, it would represent a great leap forward for the mujahideen", wrote Awlaki, who is believed to be hiding in Southern Yemen.

The "Arab Spring" Smells Like a Pile of Camel Crap

From Yahoo News:

Al Qaeda: Arab revolts herald "great leap forward"

LONDON (Reuters) – Al Qaeda's most influential English-language preacher said revolts sweeping the Arab world would help rather than harm its cause by giving Islamists freed from tyranny greater scope to speak out.
Western and Arab officials say the example set by young Arabs seeking peaceful political change is a counterweight to al-Qaeda's push for violent militancy and weakens its argument that democracy and Islam are incompatible.
But al Qaeda preacher Anwar al-Awlaki, in an article published online on Tuesday, said the removal of anti-Islamist autocrats meant Islamic fighters and scholars were now freer to discuss and organize.
"Our mujahideen brothers in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and the rest of the Muslim world will get a chance to breathe again after three decades of suffocation," he wrote, using a term that refers generally to Islamic guerrilla groups or holy warriors.

Durbin Senate hearing: US Muslims face violence FBI: Jews much more likely to

Muslims in the United States face ongoing discrimination and violence in actions that threaten basic freedoms in the nation, a US Senate hearing was told Tuesday.

The hearing was called to discuss protecting the civil rights of American Muslims, just weeks after another panel hotly debated the threat posed by homegrown Islamists.

Democratic Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin, who called the hearing, said a “backlash” which began after the attacks of September 11, 2001, continues against “innocent Muslims, Arabs, south Asians and Sikhs.”

“American Muslims are entitled to the same constitutional protections as other Americans,” Durbin said, adding that this is an issue of “not just free exercise of religion but freedom of speech.”

Thomas Perez, the assistant attorney general for civil rights, told the Senate Judiciary subcommittee hearing: “We continue to see a steady stream of violence against Muslims… The good news is that with each wave of intolerance, our nation has responded by passing news laws.”

And with the smell of emotions clouding reality still oozing from Durbin’s pores….

The Federal Bureau of Investigation’s most recent hate crime statistics, released Monday, show that crimes committed due to racial biases are the most prevalent and that — despite a great deal of rhetoric to the contrary — for crimes committed due to a religious bias, it is still safer to be Muslim than it is to be Jew.

According to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting Program in 2009 there were 8,336 victims of hate crimes. 48.8 percent of those victims were targeted because of a racial bias, 18.9 percent because of a religious bias, and 17.8 percent because of a bias against a person’s sexual orientation.

There were 4,057 victims of racially motivated hate crimes. Over 70 percent of those victims were targeted because of an anti-black bias. The second highest group targeted because of race were victims of an anti-white bias (16.5 percent).

Of the 1,575 victims of a religious bias, over 70 percent were victims of an anti-Jewish bias. The second highest group, at 8.4 percent, were the victims of an anti-Muslim bias.

When are we going to have Anti Jew hearings?

Anti Black Hearings?

Anti White hearings?

Anti Bokonononist hearings?

Anti Zoroastrian hearings?

Anti Yankee fans in New England hearings?

How the Bush and Obama Admins TOTALLY BLEW IT

When Saddam went away the tactical situation in the middle east changed a little but the overall strategic situation worsened. Teheran stronger. Waziristan stronger. Sadr stronger. IRGC stronger.

If Qaddaffi is forced to leave the same will be true, and IS TRUE NOW nomatter what the outcome. AQ stronger.

The strategic target IS IN TEHERAN.

Teheran can be weakened thru weakening or destroyed Hizballah. Weakening or removing the Syrian alliance with Teheran, weakening or destroying the Mullahs.

Bush went for an easier Iraq. It has done nothing to weaken the forces of POPULAR SALAFI DOMINANCE, and strengthened the resistance of Teheran and the Shia simply by taking out their enemy with no possible successful alternate plan. The only strategic outcome in terms of decades which benefits the USA would be if demonstration of a secular democracy respecting private rights of speech and religion (already too late to achieve that), overwhelmed the ascendant forms of Islam in the popular mind in Iraq, and provided an example others wished to emulate.

As Marco from Tripoje would say: “GOOD LUCK”

Obama has selected Libya for ‘humanitarian’ reasons, while Syria suddenly shows us an opportunity NOT OTHERWISE AVAILABLE. Justification for humanitarian intervention or bombing or destruction of Syrian strategic assets ABOUNDS .. it is call HAMA

Even a Syria aligned with KSA after Assad is dead or gone, but otherwise changed minimally would be more advantageous than any outcome in Libya, let alone one where the USA find itself functionally aligned with Al Qaeda.

Imagine this world without an Assad (and a Teheran cut off from Hizballah), or mullocracy in Teheran. No IRGC, No Hizballah backed by them, no HAMAS backed by them.

Imagine a NEUTRAL religious IRAN which has no love for the USA but NO HATE.

Instead, Bush makes a strategic error in Iraq, and Obama simply has no clue and in fact AVOIDS the difficult challenge which can bring the AMERICAN PEOPLE the most gain in personal security…IN THE END. ON PURPOSE.

American pilots, special forces and marines getting killed and killing to stop Qaddafi from the same activity?

And when ‘success’ occurs - a popular salafi govt takes over which says the same things about the infidels, and continually shows connections with AQIM?

The humanitarian mission in Bosnia and Kosovo which spared muslims and which HAS NOT ENDED brought the USA no strategic gain. Families right there feel a silent gratitude, I am sure, but they are not speaking out so as to be heard and change thought patterns in Tahrir, and cause rejection of the MB and it’s goal.

If we are going to kill and be killed, lets make sure there is a strategic purpose.


Michael Yon Refutes Rolling Stone & The Kill Team

Michael Yon:

Calling BULLSHIT on Rolling Stone

29 March 2011

Seldom do I waste time with rebutting articles, and especially not from publications like Rolling Stone. Today, numerous people sent links to the latest Rolling Stone tripe. The story is titled “THE KILL TEAM, THE FULL STORY.” It should be titled: “BULLSHIT, from Rolling Stone.”

The story—not really an “article”—covers Soldiers from 5/2 Stryker Brigade Combat Team (SBCT) in Afghanistan. A handful of Soldiers were accused of murder. It does in fact appear that a tiny group of rogues committed premeditated murder. I was embedded with the 5/2 SBCT and was afforded incredible access to the brigade by the Commander, Colonel Harry Tunnell, and the brigade Command Sergeant Major, Robb Prosser. I know Robb from Iraq. Colonel Tunnell had been shot in Iraq.

The brigade gave me open access. I could go anywhere, anytime, so long as I could find a ride, which never was a problem beyond normal combat problems. If they had something to hide, it was limited and I didn’t find it. I was not with the Soldiers accused of murder and had no knowledge of this. It is important to note that the murder allegations were not discovered by media vigilance, but by, for instance, at least one Soldier in that tiny unit who was appalled by the behavior. A brigade is a big place with thousands of Soldiers, and in Afghanistan they were spread thinly across several provinces because we decided to wage war with too few troops. Those Soldiers accused of being involved in (or who should have been knowledgeable of) the murders could fit into a minivan. You would need ten 747s for the rest of the Brigade who did their duty. I was with many other Soldiers from 5/2 SBCT. My overall impression was very positive. After scratching my memory for negative impressions from 5/2 Soldiers, I can’t think of any, actually, other than the tiny Kill Team who, to my knowledge, I never set eyes upon.

The online edition of the Rolling Stone story contains a section with a video called “Motorcycle Kill,” which includes our Soldiers gunning down Taliban who were speeding on a motorcycle toward our guys. These Soldiers were also with 5/2 SBCT, far away from the “Kill Team” later accused of the murders. Rolling Stone commits a literary “crime” by deceptively entwining this normal combat video with the Kill Team story. The Taliban on the motorcycle were killed during an intense operation in the Arghandab near Kandahar City. People who have been to the Arghandab realize the extreme danger there. The Soviets got beaten horribly in the Arghandab, despite throwing everything including the Soviet kitchen sink into the battle that lasted over a month. Others fared little better. To my knowledge, 5/2 and supporting units were the first ever to take Arghandab, and these two dead Taliban were part of that process.

The killing of the armed Taliban on the motorcycle was legal and within the rules of engagement. Law and ROE are related but separate matters. In any case, the killing was well within both the law and ROE. The Taliban on the back of the motorcycle raised his rifle to fire at our Soldiers but the rifle did not fire. I talked at length with several of the Soldiers who were there and they gave me the video. There was nothing to hide. I didn’t even know about the story until they told me. It can be good for Soldiers to shoot and share videos because it provides instant replay and lessons learned. When they gave me the video and further explained what happened, I found the combat so normal that I didn’t even bother publishing it, though I should have because that little shooting of the two Taliban was the least of the accomplishments of these Soldiers, and it rid the Arghandab of two Taliban.

Some people commented that our Soldiers used excessive force by firing too many bullets. Hogwash. And besides, they were trying to kill each other. Anyone who has seen much combat with our weak M-4 rifles realizes that one shot is generally not enough, and the Taliban were speeding at them on a motorbike, which very often are prepared as suicide bombs. If that motorcycle had been a bomb, as they often are, and got inside the group of Soldiers and exploded, they could all have been killed. Just yesterday, in Paktika, three suicide attackers came in, guns blazing, and detonated a huge truck bomb. Depending on which reports you read, about twenty workers were killed and about another fifty wounded.

In the video, our guys would have been justified in firing twice that many bullets, but at some point you are wasting ammo and that is a combat sin. The Soldiers involved in that shooting told me that the Taliban on the back may have pulled the AK trigger, but the loaded AK did not fire because the Taliban didn’t have a round in the chamber. Attention to detail. At least one also had an ammunition rack strapped across his chest.

This could go on for pages, but Rolling Stone is not worth it, and thrashing them might only build their readership. I’ve found in the past that boycotts work. I led a boycott against one magazine and it went bankrupt. It’s doubtful that Rolling Stone will go bankrupt for its sins, but you can cost them money not by boycotting their magazine, but by boycotting their advertisers. That hurts. Just pick an advertiser whose products you already buy, boycott it, and tell the advertiser why you are not buying their product.

Now I’ve got to get back to work.


Willie Gets Off For A Song (and a fine)

Further, there is no substantiation to the rumor that the border agent was patrolling in Arizona and could smell the pot coming from Willie's bus all the way in Texas

Toby Keith Knows

Uriah Heep
Lady In Black

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


This is a test that I have devised to judge whether a Muslim is moderate or not. It isn’t the most perfect test, of course, but it works. Using this test, so far, I have found many perceived moderate Muslims to be no different than terrorists. Here is how the test goes.
You have to ask the following two questions in the same order as they are presented here:
1) So, you drink alcohol, but do you also eat pork? (This question does not help in judging whether the Muslim is moderate or not. Of course if the Muslim eats pork, he might very well be a moderate but the point of this question is to ease them into thinking that the questioner is truly just asking a question and has no other agenda.)
2) What do you think about Israel? (This is the question the answer to which will help you judge whether a Muslim is truly moderate or not. It is because the issue of Israel is so hot in Muslim minds that you should always ask the first question before you get on to this one. That way, the Muslims don’t just blow up and might, I repeat, might answer in a manner that humans can understand, and not just dogs.)
It takes practice, of course, to remain patient while you hear their response. Sometimes a lot of them say that they are not political but that is very rare. You have to also remember to follow up their answers with more questions. You can actually expose a whole lot of them using this technique. I have done so on many occasions—that is, exposed them left right and center.
I have used the same techniques on Arab Christians and more often than not, I have found them to be no different than Muslim terrorists in the way they think.

Two-thirds of oil and gas leases in Gulf of Mexico inactive

But Obama tells Brazil that he wants to be their best customer?

Two-thirds of oil and gas leases in Gulf inactive

WASHINGTON – An Interior Department report to be released Tuesday says more than two-thirds of offshore oil and gas leases in the Gulf of Mexico are sitting idle.

According to the report, obtained by The Associated Press, those inactive swaths of the Gulf could potentially hold more than 11 billion barrels of oil and 50 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. The report also shows that 45 percent of all onshore oil and gas leases are inactive.

President Barack Obama ordered the Interior Department review earlier this month amid pressure to curb rising gas prices. The White House says Obama will address his plans for the country’s energy security during a speech in Washington Wednesday.

Every day is just a set of moments where the more typical sensation is HOWARD BEALE