Saturday, December 04, 2010

WSU Goes Back to the Diversity Drawing Board

How do I say this? I think I’m proud of my alma mater for the first time in my adult life?

This report from the Chicago Sun-Times:
University pulls diversity award named after Helen Thomas

December 4, 2010

DETROIT -- Wayne State University is yanking an award named for journalist Helen Thomas, citing remarks she made criticizing Israel during a conference in Dearborn.

In a brief statement e-mailed to reporters Friday, the university said it "strongly condemns the anti-Semitic remarks made by Helen Thomas."

Thomas, 90, a longtime White House correspondent who grew up in Detroit as the daughter of Lebanese immigrants, was in Dearborn on Thursday for a workshop on anti-Arab bias.

At the conference, Thomas said she stands by controversial comments about Israel that led to her resignation as a correspondent earlier this year.

She also sparked additional controversy with new comments.

"Congress, the White House and Hollywood, Wall Street are owned by the Zionists. No question, in my opinion," she said. "They put their money where their mouth is. . . . We're being pushed into a wrong direction in every way."

Robert Cohen, executive director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Metropolitan Detroit, said Wayne State made the right decision.

"I think it was just very ironic that she made these comments at an event, the purpose of which was to address stereotyping, negative stereotyping, of members of the Arab community. And it was very disappointing to know that she received a standing ovation from that audience."
As reported in the Detroit News on Thursday:
During her brief speech, Thomas told about how she was jokingly referred to as “Hezbollah,” “Hamas” and a “terrorist” by White House press officials. She said she didn't protest the comments because “I know who I am.”
So do we.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Oregon Caroler Attempts 'O Tannenbomb,' or, Paradise or Bust!

The president of the Muslim Students Association at Oregon State University, Omar Mohamed, is making the obligatory remarks intended to drive a wedge between Mohamed Mohamud’s hoped-for act of mass murder at an Oregon tree-lighting ceremony, and the religion that inspired him to undertake it. The MSA, as has been documented about four ways from Sunday by now, is the front organization for the Muslim Brotherhood on American college campuses. And the Brotherhood’s motto, if you aren’t familiar with it, includes this:
Jihad is our way/Dying in the way of Allah is our highest hope.
Mohamed, (the MSA president), told the media that “It doesn't take much thought from a reasonable person to see that his actions and behavior in this instance are not very reflective of Islam.” The MSA president also says Mohamud wasn’t known for being pious. “From what I understand, he wasn't the most religious person. He didn't regularly go to mosque.” That’s as may be. But then it’s not really mosque attendance that the really popular firebrand preachers are pushing as the express route to a hot tub in Paradise splashing with 72 virgins, is it? That’s what jihad is for.

Meanwhile, the Salman Alfarisi Islamic Center in Carvallis, Oregon, the mosque where Mohamud attended and, possibly, was radicalized, released its own statement. In it, the Islamic Center declares that the murderous explosion Mohamud was hoping to set off “does not in any way represent Islam or Muslims, rather it goes against it. In Islam, one finds no justification whatsoever for any form of a violent act against civilians even during wars,” and so on and so on.

The statement concludes with the mandatory statement that “Islam is a religion of peace and these acts are not the legitimate acts of Muslims.”

We can expect over the next few days that the anti-anti-jihadists will surface across the media reinforcing their suggestion that Mohamud was acting all alone, that he represents only a tiny fringe of Muslims, and actually wasn’t representing Muslims at all, because, as the statements from the MSA and the Islamic Center should place beyond all doubt, Islam is a religion of peace, and blah, blah, blah.

When all that gets going, talking heads will point at how the FBI made helpful suggestions to Mohamud through their undercover contacts, even at one point offering Mohamud the opportunity to become “operational,” trying to get folks thinking this plot wasn’t even Mohamud’s idea.

That’s why it’s good to keep this in mind, too. Before the FBI ever became aware of Mohamud he was already deeply devoted to the idea of becoming a jihadist martyr. In statements he freely offered, (which the FBI recorded), he recalled that during Ramadan when he was fifteen “someone told him about the martyrs and the virtues, and MOHAMUD ‘didn’t even have to hear anything else.’” Mohamud now knew what he wanted to do with his life: end it killing his fellow Americans or other suitable infidels in violent jihad.

It’s reasonable to assume that the “someone” who told him “about the martyrs and the virtues,” (or perhaps he was told about “the virgins”) was someone in his mosque, or certainly within his Islamic community. Mohamud repeatedly said that he had been thinking about becoming a jihadist since before he was fifteen. And why? To go to Paradise, he says. Last January, before the FBI ever tried to contact him, Mohamud sent an email to a friend who’d gone to Sauda Arabia to visit Mecca:
“oh, nice, makes lots of prayers for me, make [prayer] that I will be the one to open up Al Quds and make [prayer] that I will be a martyr in the highest chambers of paradise”.
Later on he dismissed all worries about blowing himself up in a suicide attack: “Because if you were going to [Paradise] you wouldn’t have to worry, right?”

In an email Mohamud believed he was sending to a contact in northwest Pakistan, he wrote: “i will contact you when i am able to travel. pray for me that allah will free my passage from the lands of the ploytheists [sic] . . . .”

Before the FBI began their operation against him, Mohamud had already been submitting articles to “Jihad Recollections” magazine, and had submitted one to al Qaeda’s “Inspire” magazine, the online publication the Wall Street Journal says “wants to make news, by inspiring young American Muslims to kill their neighbors.”

Mohamud appears to believe that “residing amongst the [infidels]. . . is a sin,” as he said in what he believed was his farewell video. Living amongst the infidels was looked upon dimly by the Prophet, and this may explain why Mohamud was so determined to get out of America to go to Yemen or Pakistan to do jihad. But, he wants to know from his fellow Muslims, as long as they are are living here, “What has stopped you from fighting in the cause of Allah [and the raising of the banner of ‘no god but Allah’?].”

The lawyers and the legal experts and the media guys will soon be hashing out how good a job the government did in catching Mohamud, or how bad a job they did violating his constitutional rights. At this point I see all that as less important in the big picture than what it was that motivated Mohamud. It’s quite clear that his motivations were purely religious. He was challenged by Islamic teachers to aspire to martyrdom as a good Muslim, and promised Paradise the instant he killed himself attempting “to damage the enemies of Allah as much as possible.”

All this badly contradicts the incessant statements from Islamic leaders, and their useful mouthpieces in the media, that these actions are not motivated by the teachings of Islam, and that we’re not struggling against radical Islamists.

Let them say this is not Islam.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

'I Was a Patdown Officer for the TSA!'

The following true story was originally published in the November edition of “The Orange Alert,” the agency newspaper of the Department of Homeland Security.

I Was a Patdown Officer for the TSA!

HER EYES BORED into mine for the first time in forty years. We both knew this one was going to be personal.

“Hello, Johnny.”

“Hi, Sister Stanislaus.”

“You look well.”

“I ain’t complaining.”

“I’m not complaining.”

Same old battleaxe. Even back at All Saints we all speculated she was past 90. And here she was, looking not a day older, which is not to say, young.

Now I laughed at her trying to correct me. I let the sound of the latex snapping on my wrist tell her that this time she wasn’t the one in charge.

“You could’ve let them scan you, Sister.”

“You think I’d let them do that, Johnny?”

No, not really. One look at the old-style get-up she still wore told me that much. The floor-length habit, the black veil stretched over a tunnel of starched cardboard, the immaculate wimple, the same black high-button shoes. I’d seen the agency bulletins warning that our most powerful scanners were helpless against rigs like these.

That made it my job.

“You want to hold your arms out like this, Sister?”

“You aren’t going to do this, Johnny. You’re a good boy.”

That was rich.

“A good boy?,” I said. “Last time you shared your thoughts on that you told me I was going to hell. Besides, it’s TSA rules. You know what you always taught us about obeying the rules.”

The way I grinned at her would have got my block knocked off in her home room.

“Yes,” she said. She sure didn’t scare easy. “I just don’t see how all this helps you find those wicked Mohamedans. You all need to put on your thinking caps.”

I didn’t tell her that TSA wasn’t budgeted for anything like that.

I reached around for what was hanging from her waist like a sash. None too gently, I yanked it free. She didn’t flinch. “Oh, HO,” I said. “And what have we here?”

“You really don’t recognize it, Johnny? Don’t tell me you’re afraid of a little rosary.”

It wasn’t all that little. It was four feet if it was an inch, with black beads the size of garbonzos and a steel-edged crucifix just right for opening up a daydreamer’s cheekbone from seven paces.

“Ain’t this the same one you used to garrote Benny Majekowski in fifth grade? He still talks like Marge Simpson.”

Her eyes closed for a moment in a gesture of sacrificial patience.

“That should be, ‘isn’t it the same one,’ Johnny. And Benny needed my help remembering the difference between ‘lain’ and ‘laid.’”

Sister Stan, still original gangster. I was still in school when the big changes started and even the hard Orders had to soften up and disarm their sisters, taking away all the heavy-duty yardsticks and the brass knuckles. Even then, Sister Stan was one of that warrior class who weren’t going to just run off and marry renegade priests or take jobs with the welfare office. She’d stayed plenty tough.

But I’d gotten tougher, too. After learning all I could from having a whole card of IHMs work over my chin like a speed bag, I thought I’d see how the soft life felt. Eventually I did six tours of duty with Special Forces. Then some time with Blackwater. Now TSA. I’d seen things.

I let the rosary rattle into the Tupperware like a rockslide. For all the reaction I got her face could have been unpainted plaster.

“You won’t dare touch me, Johnny. Because you know it isn’t right.”

“There’s no right or wrong, here, Sister,” I said. “This is the airport.”

I grabbed her. Hard. She let out a whimper of shock, another of submission, another, probably, of ecstasy.

“Whoo-hoooooooooo!” Off to one side a kid in a knit cap was pointing his camera phone our way. “YouTube!”

I gave her none of the special handling they all expect from their goody-goody podiatrists and their dentists and their morticians. Once I go to work on a passenger, he gets the same level of service as the one before him and the one after. I may not be an angel, but I’m no lousy profiler.

When I finished it wasn’t half a second before she was all pulled back together again. I found my eyes avoiding hers. I focused on de-gloving.

“Do you feel better now, Johnny?”

I had to reach way down for the guts to eyeball her again, but I found some.

“Just a job.”

She was gathering her rosary back from the bin.

“I see,” she said. Her old voice had that skeptical note I’d hear when I used to tell her how a gang of kids mugged me for my homework. “Speaking of jobs,” she said, “do you remember that lovely Jeffy Hugmore from All Saints? I’m sure you’ve heard that he’s a very successful brain doctor now. He’s even operated on Phil Donahue.”

Hugmore was a kiss-up weasel who held the school record for getting the most swirlies in a single day. Sister used to let him clean the chalkboards.

“Good for him,” I said. The line behind her was getting restless. So was I.

“They do say all this makes us safer,” she said. Then her eyes to pin me the way they always could when it was life or death if I couldn’t come up with what 11 x 12 was.

“Johnny, do you think that’s true?”

I had to break the spell. I tapped my badge and said: “They ain’t payin’ us to think, Sister.”

It did the trick. I got her eyes to do the martyr thing again. But this time she didn’t correct my grammar. Probably figured: what’s the use?

“Have a nice flight,” I said. They make us say it. She didn’t let on she heard me, fussing with her veil to make it more uncomfortable.

And then she said: “Have a nice flight, Sister.

Damn! “Have a nice flight, Sister,” I said. After where my mitts had just been, I guess I owed her that.

Two seconds later she was floating off towards Departures.

I turned back to meet the next passenger they were handing up to me. “Hey, Johnny, old pal!” the guy was saying. “Long time, no see!”

Jeffy Hugmore’s terrified eyes stared into mine for the first time in forty years.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Saints Doing the Miracles No Other Saints Will Do

The Detroit Free Press has an article today about the arrival at Holy Redeemer Catholic Church of a relic of St. Toribio Romo Gonzalez, said, (it’s not reported by whom) to be “the patron saint for undocumented immigrants, especially those who have crossed the border from Mexico to the U.S.” (“Holy Redeemer Catholic Church to install relic of Mexican saint”).

Reporter Niraj Warikoo writes:

Many have stories about the saint that circulate throughout the community. They tell of people who cross the border in search of a better life. On their way, they worry about getting caught or finding enough food and water to make the journey. According to some, St. Toribio appears and helps them as they're crossing.

"He is the patron of many of us," Mely Arredondo of Dearborn said. "There are testimonials of people crossing the border. Sometimes, the Border Patrol is coming to get them and suddenly he appears to help. It's only about an inch long, a sliver of bone encased behind glass in a gold-plated vessel.
I think this may be the first time the Church has recognized a patron saint assisting people engaged in unlawful activity, (but DU has been unable to confirm that several east coast bishops have been putting forward Ted Kennedy as patron saint of people avoiding charges of negligent homicide). But the new devotion to St. Toribio has also led to what some theologians are calling a clash amongst intercessors.

It turns out that U.S. Customs and Border Protection falls under the patronage of St. Michael the Archangel, patron saint of law enforcement officers. Lately those Catholic officers who’ve always been able to rely on St. Michael to help them catch illegal crossers have been complaining about an unexplained decline in answered prayers. Several report seeing fleeing suspects, the fat ones whom they used to catch easily, suddenly receive strength to outrun their SUVs, while other undocumented persons vanish in a burst of light, instantly reappearing outside Home Depots all ready to go to work.

Attempts by church officials to sponsor “dialogues” between the conflicting constituencies haven’t gone well. Sessions break down when customs officers drink all the coffee, and then insist that St. Michael’s status as an archangel ought to guarantee their requests get priority. On the other side, St. Toribio’s devotees keep disappearing through fire exits, leaving behind empty tuna cans and water jugs.

The solution awaits some kind of comprehensive reform, theologians say. Experts say that for the immediate future Mexican Catholics sneaking into America to make more money or to commit drug executions or home invasions will probably be able to count on St. Toribio’s assistance; and any Catholic border officer who wants to implore St. Michael’s help to catch some of these Catholic Mexicans, or for protection against being shot down by a sadistic hitman whose madre is back in Juarez lighting vigil candles for the success of the cartel is free to do so, but there are no guarantees.

And don’t even ask about who some people have in mind as patron saint for condom users.

'Fair Game'

Detroit News film critic Tom Long reviewed “Fair Game” over the weekend, the cinematic re-telling of the liberal-media version of the Valerie Plame story, a sort of fictionalized version of a fairy tale. I don’t care for Long’s reviews generally, and in this particular review he seemed more interested in restating Valerie Plame’s and Joe Wilson’s talking points than in actually doing his job. I felt the need to send him an e-mail response.

Mr. Long:

You could’t just write a movie review, you had to try educating us on history. Well, I see 280 words and at least twelve easily checked historical myths. Not quite one for every 16 words, but close.

You see, this is exactly the kind of journalism I recall going on during the “Plame affair.” I don’t need to see “Fair Game” to tell me what happened (or didn't): I was there. We all were. I was just one of the few who actually paid attention.

You could have done all of your fact-checking in The Washington Post.

Falsehood number one: The story of “Fair Game” is “too ugly to be true. . . .[but] it is.” But it isn’t. Richard Armitage has no role in the film. That makes it ugly AND untrue.

Falsehood two: The film is “an examination of one of the slimiest moments of George W. Bush's administration.” But if the movie tracks your restatement of what happened, then it’s not an “examination” at all, just another hate-Bush hit piece like the hundreds churned out in the media at the time.

Falsehood Three: Scooter Libby was the “chief bad guy involved.” You forgot to mention that Libby wasn’t convicted of doing anything to Plame, let alone “outing” her. No one was. Libby’s conviction was for a “process” crime of perjury, trapped by Patrick Fitzgerald into contradicting himself after numerous grand-jury cross-examinations about a conversation with Tim Russert thousands of conversations ago. And in 2003 weren’t you all insisting that the “chief bad guy” was Dick Cheney or Karl Rove?

Falsehood Four: Plame “was a CIA agent trying to halt nuclear proliferation.” Regardless of what Plame’s non-covert CIA assignment was in 2003, in this particular episode her self-assigned brief was to get her husband sent to Niger to try to debunk Bush’s basis for deposing Saddam for her own political reasons.

Falsehood Five: “The CIA asked Joe to go to Africa .” See Falsehood Four. I remember that in the earliest version of this fib, Wilson started out claiming that Dick Cheney had asked him to go, until Cheney made him take it back.

Falsehood Six: Wilson made the trip to investigate whether Iraq had been to Niger trying to buy yellowcake uranium but “found nothing.” No, Wilson found that Iraq HAD been to Niger trying to buy yellowcake uranium, and his report to the CIA actually bolstered Bush’s case. Wilson just lied about it later in his New York Times article, and lied about what was in his own report. The WP reported that, “According to the former Niger mining minister, Wilson told his CIA contacts, Iraq tried to buy 400 tons of uranium in 1998.”

Falsehood Seven: “Bush cited that non-existent uranium story while building a case for the invasion.” Really? Still with the 16 words? The truth (still) is that Bush cited British intelligence reports that Saddam had “sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa,” every word of which is accurate: Saddam had sought uranium in Africa , as everyone knew then and knows even better now--us, the British-- even Wilson knows. Why don’t you? Eventually, we found 1.2 million pounds of (nonexistent?) yellowcake in Saddam’s stockpile.

Falsehood Eight: “ Wilson wrote an op-ed piece debunking Bush's ‘facts.’” He didn’t debunk anything, except the honesty of his own reports to the CIA, which, according to the Washington Post, actually “added to the evidence that Iraq may have tried to buy uranium in Niger .”

Falsehood Nine: “The administration leaked the fact that Plame was a CIA agent.” No the administration didn’t. It was Clintonite Richard Armitage, and it wasn’t a leak, it was gossip. An alternative source for that information was identified by The Washington Post back in 2006, when they recognized “that the person most responsible for the end of Ms. Plame's CIA career is Mr. Wilson.” How? Because Wilson’s (and Plame’s) decision to go public with their outlandish charges inevitably had to lead back to exposure of her role in sending Wilson on that trip. Armitage told Bob Woodward Wilson had been “calling everybody” about the trip his CIA wife had sent him on. "Everyone knows."

Falsehood Ten: Plame’s exposure put her, “and many of her contacts, as well as her operations, in danger.” Is THAT why she had to go to ground on the cover of Vanity Fair magazine? Retired CIA veteran R.E. Pound was charged with assessing damage to Plame’s career and operations, and stated publicly that it “was ludicrous for her to claim that the exposure forced an end to her career in intelligence.” As to damage he found: “There was none.”

Falsehood Eleven: Plame and Wilson were “demonized as traitors” in the media. Phooey. They were criticized by the conservative press, and by a few honest journalists at The Washington Post, but largely they were lionized as heroes by the mainstream media, just as they’re being lionized now in movie reviews of this picture. Like yours.

Falsehood Twelve: The Plame-Wilson’s lives were ruined “because a political schoolyard bully took affront when someone dared to speak the truth.” You may want to recycle that line if anyone ever makes a movie about Juan Williams. It's closer to reality that this couple brought this on themselves by their own lies and eagerness to use government positions to hinder an administration that offended their politics. The Washington Post editorialized back in 2006 that Wilson “diverted responsibility from himself and his false charges by claiming that President Bush's closest aides had engaged in an illegal conspiracy. It's unfortunate that so many people took him seriously.”

And it's unfortunate that they still do.

TR Clancy

Sharp as a Pistol

And once you dance with me,
You'll fall in love, you see.
Bristol Stomp will make you,
Mine all mine.

Even a dance show can illustrate the way of things. Since Sarah Palin’s national debut at the Republican Convention in September 2008, the unreasoned invective that swelled overnight into a torrent, (“I hate her because she’s stupid” is not reasoned criticism) has never weakened to this day. All of the anger isn’t partisan, either, though most of it is. A certain segment of the population are going to hate beautiful, likeable women out of sheer jealousy. Kathleen Parker, for example, and, Peggy Noonan, and others I won’t mention.

The flood grew quickly, and quickly widened to include Palin’s family, like her son, Trig, then her husband, Todd, and their daughters Willow and Bristol. I can’t help but recall that portent in Revelation of the mother and child who are hated so much by the dragon that he pours “water like a river out of his mouth” to sweep her and her offspring away, except that “the earth came to the help of the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed the river which the dragon had poured from his mouth.” (Rev. 12.16).

Now I’m well aware that the Woman in the Bible, whoever she is, is not Sarah Palin. But keep in mind that once the dragon in that story was thwarted he went off, angry as ever, enraged as ever, “to make war on the rest of her offspring,” and I definitely consider Sarah to be one of the Woman’s offspring. As for the dragon, I just figure he’s the identical fiend he always is. That’s why I don’t want to be on his side.

Now Bristol Palin threatens to win the trophy on Dancing With the Stars. This potentiality has a lot of people upset, convinced it’s unfair when Bristol’s clearly not the best dancer. Bristol returns week after week in spite of her low scores by virtue of a landslide of votes from viewers. If she were to win now the show might be reduced to a mere popularity contest, instead of just a popularity contest combined with a dance competition, which is exactly what DWTS is.

Personally, I hope Bristol doesn’t win. She’s already proved herself. And if she wins now it will just turn into Bush v Gore all over again, and I’d rather not go through that a second time. I’d rather not hear Shirley Jackson Lee’s and Keith Olbermann’s ingenious explanations of how Jennifer Grey was denied the trophy because of race.

The issue isn’t Bristol’s dancing, but her popularity. And because of who Bristol is, that means the issue is the popularity of her mother. The unexpectedly large number of people voting for Bristol contradicts the going mood of the gallery of bubble-wrapped Palin-haters who really believed that Palin was being booed that night in the audience at DWTS, and that all of America was booing her, too. Like the old story of Pauline Kael, flabbergasted by Nixon’s landslide in 1972 when she didn’t know a single person who voted for him, the average Palin-hater has existed until now in safe ignorance there’s anyone around who can stand her.

There are certain kinds of collective hate that only feel good when it’s unanimous. Once have a gainsayer in the crowd and you start feeling shameful and small, and next thing you know you’re questioning the rightness of loathing someone just for saying, “refudiate,” while still driving around with that “Mean People Suck” bumper sticker on your Subaru.

Sunday, November 07, 2010

'But Grand Imam, What Big Eyes You Have!'

Not everything about the recent Vatican Synod of Bishops for the Middle East was discouraging. According to the Catholic News Service:

Two Syrian Catholic bishops living in Lebanon told the Synod of Bishops for the Middle East that the blossoming number of Catholic-Muslim dialogue projects has not and may never lead to real understanding. . . .

Their statements differed significantly from most of the other synod members' speeches on dialogue with Muslims in the Middle East; the majority of synod members -- and the two Muslims Pope Benedict XVI invited to address the assembly -- focused instead on progress in understanding and cooperation.

In his written submission, Archbishop Raboula Beylouni, who works in the Syrian Catholic curia in Lebanon, wrote that formal Catholic-Muslim dialogues are "difficult and often ineffective," partially because the Quran tells Muslims they belong to "the only true and complete religion."

Muslims, he said, come "to dialogue with a sense of superiority and with the certitude of being victorious."

In addition, the archbishop said, "The Quran allows the Muslim to hide the truth from the Christian and to speak and act contrary to how he thinks and believes."

Islam does not recognize the equality of men and women and does not recognize the right of religious freedom, he also wrote.
(“Two bishops at synod question effectiveness of dialogue with Muslims”).
If we had more Christian leaders like Archbishop Beylouni, there’d be a lot less dialogue -- and a lot more understanding. Dialogue is overrated, anyway. Not all dialogues turn out well, as Little Red Riding Hood discovered at grandma’s house when the topic turned to the size of grandma’s teeth.

Nor is understanding all that comes out -- if it ever really does -- of Muslim-Christian dialogues -- especially when one side is lying. Other harmful byproducts have included the spread of disinformation, a false sense of security, and fatal delays in identifying an enemy who means us harm.

The problems we’re having with Islamic jihad aren’t caused by a lack of understanding. They’re caused by our refusal to face what we already know.

Caroline Glick calls this the “Age of Dissimulation.” Dhimmi leaders, she writes, daren’t speak out loud what they know about their Islamic masters for fear of punishment and even annihilation. “But what can explain the West’s embrace of lies about Islam?”

Rather than discuss the nature and threat of Islamic supremacism, the Western media, Western political leaders and academics deny it.

Years from now, when historians seek an overarching concept to define our times, they could do worse than refer to it as the Age of Dissimulation. Today our leading minds devote their energies and cognitive powers to figuring out new ways to hide reality from themselves and the general public.

Take US President Barack Obama’s senior counterterrorism advisor for example. On Sunday, John Brennan spoke on Fox News about the latest attempted Islamic terrorist attack on American soil.

Since the Obama administration has barred US officials from referring to terrorists as terrorists and effectively barred US officials from acknowledging that Islamic terrorists are Muslims, Brennan simply referred to the Islamic terrorists in Yemen who tried to send bombs to synagogues in Chicago as “individuals.”

Today, practically, the only individuals willing to speak honestly about who Islamic supremacists are and what they want are the Islamic supremacists themselves.
The CNS also confirms some of her observations, and those of Robert Spencer, that statements coming out of the Synod reflect the fact of Christian leaders in the Middle East being “so terrified of Islamic aggression” against their communities, whose only protection is their dhimmi status, which is no protection at all:
[Monsignor Robert Stern, secretary general of the Catholic Near East Welfare Association] also acknowledged that fear for the safety of Christians in some Muslim countries may have prompted the synod fathers to moderate their comments. This was, he said, a “prudential judgment,” since Christians throughout the region can suffer consequences of their leaders' remarks.

“Most of these bishops come from ... places where they're a very small minority, they're bishops of a very small community, and they feel a lot of social pressure living in an Islamic world,” he observed. “A lot of them are in politically very uncertain circumstances-- where they're at risk, and their people are at risk. So, they don't have quite so open and expansive of a way of talking about the situation.”

“Just the experience for them to come to Rome, and talk to one another, and experience a kind of free ambiance where anything can be said ... was a very powerful experience for them-- to have solidarity, to be gathered around the Pope, and to be able to reflect.”
It’s a pathetic admission, evasively phrased, (“a lot of social pressure living in an Islamic world . . . politically very uncertain circumstances”), but it tells the truth nonetheless. Christians in the Muslim Middle East fear for their safety. The shepherds can’t protect their flocks from the wolves.

Maybe that lungful of free air, and proximity to Pope Benedict, who told some truth himself on Islam at Regensburg, liberated Archbishop Beylouni enough so he could utter aloud that a spade is a spade is a spade.

Baghdad Massacre

A Front Page Magazine article by Robert Spencer on October 28, (“A Tale of Two Bishops”), reported on the curious shift in the opinions of two Eastern Catholic bishops attending the Vatican Synod on Christians in the Middle East.

In contradiction to their own critical statements about Islam and the treatment of Christians in Iraq by Muslims of only a few years before, both men, Archbishop Cyril Salim Bustros, Eparch of Newton for the Melkite Greek Catholics in the United States, and Emmanuel III Delly, the Patriarch of Babylon of the Chaldeans, head of the Chaldean Catholic Church, were now stating opinions based upon Islamic talking points. Archbishop Bustros blames Israel for everything, repeating the heresy that Christ “nullified” Yahweh’s covenant with Israel, leaving Jews “no longer a chosen people.”

Archbishop Delly also pretended, after years of ugly evidence to the contrary, that the few Iraqi Christians who haven’t fled persecution in that country in the past few years are getting along great with Iraq’s Muslim majority. “Christians are good with their fellow Muslims and in Iraq there is mutual respect among them.”

Three days after Spencer’s article was published, Muslims attacked Baghdad’s Our Lady of Deliverance Church, murdering the priest as he said mass and taking 120 Christians hostage. By the time it ended at least 52 persons had lost their lives, and scores were seriously maimed and wounded.

In 2006 Archbishop Bustros said, “the doctrines of Islam dictate war against unbelievers.” He also said that “the concept of nonviolence is absent from Muslim doctrine and practice.” And that “peace in Islam is based on the surrender of all people to Islam and to God’s power based on Islamic law. They have to defend this peace of God even by force.”

In 2007 Emmanuel III Delly described the dire situation of Christians in Iraq this way: “Christians are killed, chased out of their homes before the very eyes of those who are supposed to be responsible for their safety.” In 2008, he said: “The situation in some parts of Iraq, is disastrous and tragic. Life is a Calvary: there is no peace or security… Everyone is afraid of kidnapping.”

Spencer believes that Christians in the Middle East, and their leaders, as exemplified by these two prelates, “dissemble” to protect their people from even worse violence from their persecutors were they to speak out. “Their odd statements of late were almost certainly made in an attempt to protect their communities. The situation of Christians in the Middle East is bad enough, and they may fear they will make it even worse by speaking more honestly about Islamic supremacism and jihad.”

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Behind the Veil: Sharia

Is it unfair to point to the growing number of women and girls in hijab as evidence of the Sharia law the mayor and others flatly deny exists here in Dearborn?

In my unscientific reckoning the number of women in Dearborn wearing hijab is increasing. Whether or not this means that more Sharia-compliant women are immigrating to Dearborn, or that more assimilated women who’ve been living here are being pressured to adopt hijab, I can’t say. I can say that the choice to cover is inconsistent with a desire to assimilate into American culture. I say that even more emphatically for the niqab and the chador. It’s possible to be modest without hiding your hair.

The hijab isn’t only an ethnic or cultural phenomenon, like the hookah or lamb dishes. It’s strictly religious. It’s Sharia. And if the headscarf as a gesture of female modesty in dress were the extent of Sharia, it might even be admirable, considering the sexual excesses of the times.

But the headscarf is not the extent of Sharia. It’s more like a signpost letting you know you’ve just entered the precincts of Islam. The weight of its symbolism is significant even in Islamic nations like Turkey, where it was banned, and where it’s re-appearance terrifies secularists who recognize it as the vanguard of Islamist radicalism even in the home of the caliphate. It’s important enough that bin Laden cited France’s “burqa ban” as one of the reasons for going to war on French interests.

Professor Iqbal Al-Gharbi, a Muslim scholar from the Islamic Zaytouna University in Tunis, explained it this way: “The veil is just the tip of the iceberg. Behind the veil, there is the regressive interpretation of the sharia [Koranic law]. There are the three essential inequalities which define this interpretation: inequality between man and woman, between Muslim and non-Muslim, between free man and slave.”

Do many women and girls in America cover themselves voluntarily? Sure they do. Are there also many who feel they have little choice? I can’t believe that doesn’t happen, too. It happens in other countries, and not only Saudi Arabia and Iran and Hamas-ruled Gaza. According to a 2003 survey conducted in France, “77 percent of girls wearing the hijab said they did so because of physical threats from Islamist groups.”

Muslim women who try to rebel are considered “whores” and treated as outcasts. Some of them want to move to areas “with no Muslims” to escape. However, that might not be a solution, as Islamists are at work all over France. The Communist newspaper L'Humanité in 2003 interviewed two Catholic-born French women who said they had converted to Islam and started wearing the niqab after systematic indoctrination by the Muslim Brotherhood.
The following story is from Tuesday’s Washington Times:
Three years ago, my husband and I were walking through London's Heathrow Airport on the way to our honeymoon in Italy. Men in the traditional Islamic garb of Saudi Arabia were walking through the security checkpoints behind us.

To my surprise, my husband, a man who was raised by an observant Muslim mother, stopped to watch as they went through security. He wanted to make sure the employees checked each man thoroughly. My husband had just returned from his homeland of Iraq, where he had been working as an Arabic translator with U.S. soldiers. When my husband saw certain Muslim garb, he naturally felt nervous.

His niece, an observant Muslim who fasts during Ramadan even though it leaves her parched and tired at work, feels nervous when she sees men whose appearance expresses extreme Muslim observance, such as men with a long, thick beards without mustaches. While she lived in Iraq, she learned to fear those who wanted to imitate most closely seventh-century norms of dress. Why? One day when she was in a salon in Baghdad, men came in and told her in threatening tones that her dress was “un-Islamic.” They told her she needed to change her clothes or she would “be punished.” She never understood why. She was wearing the hijab and covering her arms and legs. The men waited for her in a car outside the salon. Out of fear, my niece called male relatives to come and pick her up. Now that she is in the United States, she will walk out of Starbucks, never mind an airplane, if she sees men dressed in Islamic styles associated with hard-line ideas, even though she knows the hard-liners in Iraq often dressed in Western clothes in order to blend in. . . .In Ed Husain’s excellent book, “The Islamist” (Penguin Global, 2008), the author describes how older and devoutly Muslim parents of Southeast Asian heritage in London feel nervous when their children adopt seventh-century Middle Eastern styles. Such dress is foreign to their heritage. The parents are not bigots. They are concerned with the radicalism the dress can sometimes indicate.
The point isn’t headscarves, but the advance of Sharia in the United States. Muslim Brotherhood spokesmen and useful media idiots have taken maximum advantage of the recent Sharron Angle remarks to reframe the misinformation about Sharia in America from its innocuousness (Faisal Abdul Rauf saying the Constitution has many elements of Islamic law) to the hilarious fact that Sharia doesn’t exist. The very subject of Sharia in the USA, mocks Islamist Reza Aslan at The Daily Beast “is a bit like passing a federal law banning Americans from riding unicorns.” (“America's Anti-Islam Hysteria”).

Very funny. Except no teenage girls were ever executed by their father on orders from a unicorn.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Oh, oh, Ohio!


Why is Ohio Dem Hanging with Islamic Extremists?

By Joel Mowbray

While the news this election cycle has been focused on horse races and high-wattage personalities like Sharron Angle and Christine O’Donnell, one of the most important races in the country has slipped below the national radar—despite the fact that one of the key figures involved has a nasty habit of mingling with Islamic extremists.

In the crucial bellwether state of Ohio, there are two up-and-coming candidates squaring off for state treasurer—and the stakes are very high. Democrats are desperate to defeat the Republican, state Rep. Josh Mandel, a Marine veteran whom many observers see as a major star-in-the-making after he helped spearhead the effort to divest Ohio’s pension funds from companies that do business in the Iranian energy sector.

But Democrats’ obsession with knocking off Mandel means that they are backing incumbent Treasurer Kevin Boyce, whose competence and ethics have been called into question by mainstream media outlets.

George Soros-backed Progressive Majority, a group that focuses on state and local races, has looked past these problems and made Boyce
its top candidate this cycle.

Backing Boyce means more than just supporting a flawed candidate, however, as he has handed control of his office over to his top staffer, Deputy Treasurer Amer Ahmad, who has a habit of hanging around people who are well-known for ties to Islamic radicals and terrorists. Ahmad does so in his professional capacity, as well as in his personal life, choosing to attend an infamous mosque near Columbus, Ohio.

Although Boyce’s name is the one voters will see next Tuesday, Ahmad will continue to be the one effectively running the office if the Democrat wins. Several former Ohio Treasury officials who spoke with this journalist on the condition of anonymity say that Boyce has given Ahmad “free reign” to run the office as he sees fit.

One of Ahmad’s most questionable decisions was to spend his July 4 holiday as the keynote speaker at a dinner sponsored by Amana Funds, a Sharia-compliant mutual fund company whose co-founder and current trustee Yaqub Mirza was targeted for terrorist connections in an FBI raid in 2002, as were two other longtime trustees, Iqbal Unus and Jamal Barzinji. (Barzinji left the board in 2001.)

According to an
FBI affidavit, Amana’s co-founder Mirza was paymaster for an Islamic charity that funneled millions to Hamas. Mirza signed at least three checks totaling over $300,000 from the account of Safa Trust, which were given to the Holy Land Foundation. HLF was eventually shut down for supporting Hamas, and its founders were sentenced last year to lengthy prison terms for terrorism-related convictions.

Amana has shown itself to be radical in other ways. Its website, for example, approvingly cites the expertise of extremist cleric Yusuf al-Qaradawi, who is banned from the U.S. and the United Kingdom. Qaradawi has issued fatwas legitimizing terrorism against Israeli civilians, as well as approving the murder of Americans in Iraq.

Additionally, Amana has utilized a Qaradawi protégé, Salah Soltan, as a Sharia advisor for its funds, according to a
2006 SEC filing.

Echoing his mentor, Soltan has engaged in virulent anti-Semitism and promoted bloodshed. During a December 2008 interview on the Egyptian TV network al-Nas, Soltan called for the murder of Jews, and predicted that the “U.S. will suffer more deaths than all those killed in this third Gaza holocaust.”

Ahmad is likely well aware of Soltan, who earlier this year
appeared on Hamas’ TV network. After all, the fiery cleric is the former resident scholar at the mosque Ahmad attends, the Noor Islamic Center. Although Soltan ended his regular role at the mosque before Ahmad arrived in mid-2008, documents filed by attorneys in an unrelated civil case last year showed that Soltan preached at Noor as recently as December 2008.

Noor’s radicalism goes much beyond Soltan, however.

The founder of the mosque, Dr. Hany Saqr, was listed in a leadership directory of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood, which was submitted as a government exhibit in the successful Holy Land Foundation prosecution. “The Muslim Brotherhood is an international organization that seeks to spread a puritanical form of Islam, and it has served as the parent for every major Sunni terrorist group, from Hamas to Islamic Jihad to al Qaeda,” explains terrorism expert Steve Emerson, executive director of the Investigative Project on Terrorism.

Ahmad doesn’t just attend services at Noor Islamic Center, either. When he was looking for a receptionist, he shunned the common practice of publicly posting the opening and instead announced it only at his mosque. The woman he hired is the wife of his personal friend, Noure Alo.

As it happens, Alo
scored a lobbying contract from State Street Bank this year shortly after the firm submitted bids for custodianship of Ohio’s massive pension funds. Alo—whose specialty as a lawyer is immigration, not banking—had never before had been hired as a lobbyist. State Street won three of the four bids, winning custodianship of over $32 billion in assets.

It is possible that Ahmad, who refused comment for this story, does not share the radical Islamic beliefs of the leading figures at Amana Funds and the Noor Islamic Center. But even assuming he doesn’t, Ohio voters must ask themselves: Why does he choose to associate with people whose troubling ties are so well-documented?

If Ahmad’s boss, Democrat Kevin Boyce, wins next Tuesday, Ohioans would be understandably concerned about what Ahmad would do over the next four years.

Although this race has not received its fair share of national attention, there are few clearer—or more important—choices that voters will face.
UPDATE: The Noor Islamic Center has been described as “one of the primary sources of Islamic extremism in Central Ohio.” It’s the mosque attended by Rifqa Bary’s family, and “leaders of the Noor Center community” pressured Ms. Bary’s father that the matter of her conversion to Christianity needed to be dealt with “immediately.”

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Dearborn 'Miserable'? Must Be Those Road Repairs

Oh, boy. It looks as if Adam (“Azzam the American”) Gadhan missed Anderson Cooper 360 the night Mayor O’Reilly declared to the world that there’s no Sharia in Dearborn. Or maybe Azzam’s video for Al-Qaida calling on area Muslims to fulfill their jihad duty and “retaliate” against the infidel leaders “on their own soil” was already in the can for broadcast before last Friday.

According to the Detroit Free Press, Gadahn, “In a 48-minute recording posted on the Internet. . . called upon Muslims living in what he called ‘the miserable suburbs of Paris, London, Detroit’ to attack Americans, citing as examples the Ft. Hood shooter in Texas and the man who tried to set off a bomb on a plane descending into Detroit Metro Airport on Christmas Day.”

Dawud Walid does his inevitable damage control by arguing that Gadahn doesn’t understand Dearborn Muslims. That’s as may be, but Gadahn and Walid certainly understand one another. They both share the Muslim Brotherhood conviction “that their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging’ its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions.”

That is the language of the Muslim Brotherhood, the international jihadist organization whose American agencies include the Muslim Students Association, and CAIR, among others. Walid wants to distance himself from Al-Qaida, but bin Laden got his start with the Brotherhood, and the Brotherhood and Al-Qaida share nearly the same ideological roots, even if they may disagree on tactics. Al-Qaida is more violent, the Brotherhood more focused on “dawa,” incremental implementation of Sharia law, but all leading to final Muslim domination. That’s why Omar Ahmad, onetime chairman of CAIR, could say that “Islam isn't in America to be equal to any other faith, but to become dominant. The Koran, the Muslim book of scripture, should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on earth.”

Nor is Walid altogether right when he denies that AQ has any supporters in “any Western countries.”

Then Tarek Baydoun has gotten himself onto some more speed dials. Last week he got some notice in the Press & Guide by agreeing with Mayor O’Reilly’s criticism of Sharron Angle. Today Niraj Warikoo quotes Baydoun slamming Gadahn: “’He's either mentally ill or utterly evil,’ Baydoun said. ‘He has nothing to do with any faith tradition. He's disconnected from Muslim-American as can be.’”

Except Azzam does have something to do with a faith tradition, as he converted to Islam and joined Al Qaida so he could do jihad. And he’s been working pretty hard at it ever since, including dodging who knows how many drones. There’s no mistake that he couches his sermon to area Muslims in Islamic terms:
Know that jihad is your duty as well, and you have an opportunity to strike the leaders of unbelief and retaliate against them on their own soil. As long as there is no covenant between you and them, here you are in the battlefield just like heroes before you.
Baydoun’s usual defense to bad facts is to cite the imaginary wall of separation between Islam and Islamic terrorism. He called the Ft. Hood massacre “an outrageous attack [that] has nothing to do with religion. It was strictly criminal.” Before that, he blamed 9/11 “on American policies and power, while denying that any of the hijackers could be “affiliated with Islam.”

Apparently, Allahu Akhbar! is an Arabic phrase meaning, “I’m an atheist criminal, and I’m going to sacrifice my life to prove it!”

Maybe Azzam won’t get many takers on his recruitment message. But I’ll wager he’s as good at knowing what the Ummah is thinking as Walid will ever admit to. And Al-Qaeda had always been an effective recruiter, including recently, inspiring Nidal Hasan, Abdulmutallab, Faisal Shahzad, and all those Somalis from Minnesota. And it only takes a few.

Do you believe all this? First sabotaging our miserable house, and now our miserable suburbs.

I’m glad Barbara Billingsley isn’t around to have to see this.

Letter from City Hall

Fresh from responding by letter to Senate candidate Sharron Angle, His Honor Mayor Jack O’Reilly has once again had to set pen to paper in response to defamation of the hometown.

An Al-Qaida video was released online Friday featuring “Azzam the American” (Adam Gadahn) calling on Muslims to attack on their home soil. In the video, Azzam addresses Muslim emigrants forced to live in the margins of society in “the miserable suburbs of Paris, London, Detroit,” an unmistakeable, and unflattering, reference that includes Dearborn.

Thanks to a correspondent with an inside track at the city, DU managed to get hold of a copy of Mayor O’Reilly’s letter to Adam Gadahn:
Adam “Azzam the American” Gadahn
Cave # 14UBL
Waziristan, Pakistan

Dear Mr. Gadahn:

I am deeply distressed about your misperceptions about our community and what outstanding opportunities of dining, entertainment, and top-flight public services Dearborn offers to people of all ages, religions, and ethnic backgrounds. Your recent reference to our city as a “miserable suburb” of Detroit ignores the fact that Dearborn ranks consistently in national surveys as one of the most livable communities in America! Dearborn is not miserable! Do not attack!

I am afraid that many share the misconception that Dearborn’s Muslims are confined to squalid ghettoes, cowering in constant terror of summary arrest, deportation, or outright disappearance -- probably because American media has been reporting this for years. I also have heard somewhere that Dearborn boasts numerous members of Muslim civil rights organizations
committed to working in America to eliminate and destroy Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging’ its miserable house. That report is true. Still, we all accept and celebrate such views as part of the richness and diversity that is Dearborn, provided they are held in a moderate way.

But let me assure you again that Dearborn is not a miserable place. Our Muslim community includes a thriving middle-class. Visit any of Dearborn’s diverse and well-stocked retail collections and instead of emigrants on the margins of society you will see parking lots zooming with high-end SUVs with prosperous Muslims at the wheels, attractive and stylishly-dressed young Arab shoppers, and countless Middle Eastern women sporting Gucci bags and shoes -- and all of them enjoying the absolute latest in cell phone technology. As a former Californian you may also appreciate a store like Dearborn Music, where you could be sure to find the latest Brian Wilson compilation CD at a very competitive price.

Many people are misinformed that Dearborn, which I like to call the quintessentially America City, is part of a "Zio-Crusader coalition," but let me assure you that nothing of the kind is the case. The only coalition we're a part of is the Coalition to Build a Better Dearborn! But seriously, there is no Zionism in Dearborn. For that matter, there’s not really that much Zionism in the Middle East, as I believe it is only hanging on in one little country. As to Dearborn, I honestly can’t say if there even are any Jews here, and if there are, I’m pretty sure no one pays them any attention. I know I don’t. Did I mention we have 7 mosques?

In the event your indictment is dismissed and you are not killed by a Predator drone (much of the technology for which was developed right here in the Detroit area!) I invite you to visit Dearborn and see for yourself that Dearborn is indeed not miserable. We have Greenfield Village and The Padzieski Art Gallery, (hours from noon to 6:00 PM Tuesday through Friday; Saturday, noon to 5:30 p.m.), and I personally will escort you to our next meeting between Muslim leaders and area counterterrorism officials.

I don’t blame you entirely for misunderstanding Dearborn. The international and national media often cast our community in a false light. Only recently I had to appear on national television to clarify that there is no Sharia in Dearborn, an absurd rumor being spread around by some Christian missionaries I recently had arrested. While Dearborn has seen its fair share of criminal prosecutions against individuals for supporting Hezbollah and Hamas, or for money laundering on behalf of jhadist organizations, or for running charities sending illegal support to terror organizations, or for running around in a park with an AK-47 -- not to mention the Underwear bomber who recently tried to crash an airliner into our city, which you may have seen on CNN! -- I am proud to report that Muslims have been practicing their faith in our community for almost 90 years without a single incident or conflict.

Anyway, there’s nothing like a personal visit to experience firsthand that there is no need to urge any of your followers in Dearborn to rise up and do anything, er, violent, because I really consider Dearborn to be one really world class hometown. If circumstances make a visit impractical right now, I would welcome a phone call so I can tell you more about our community. Space prevents me from telling you about the Dearborn Homecoming, which this year will be featuring that guitar player who used to play with Billy Ray Cyrus, but I invite you to Google it for more information.


John B. “Jack the American” O’Reilly

Dearborn the Sharia-Free City

Last week Nevada candidate for U.S. Senate Sharron Angle caught some flak for remarking about Sharia in Dearborn. When a tape of the comments surfaced the media whooped with glee and went to work trying to make her look stupid. Angle is supported by the Tea Party and just might save America from any more of Harry Reid and his insufferable scolding. She must be stopped!

Her foo poo? Acknowledging that radical Islam has had an unhealthy influence in American cities and towns, including Dearborn.

Mayor Jack O’Reilly took issue with the way Angle said that Dearborn wasn’t under the Constitution (which isn’t what Angle said), and called her remarks “Shameful.” He appeared on Anderson Cooper 360 last Friday, to, as Said Deep said on his blog, “set the record straight.”

As for setting the record straight, all O’Reilly really did was scoff away the idea that there’s Sharia in Dearborn. Hell, Jack says “it isn’t even talked about in Dearborn.” While he was at it, he denied that there is much in the way of “hardly any Sharia anywhere in the Middle East, there’s only about three countries that still carry that out.” (Good luck finding that gem being blogged and denounced in the media).

O’Reilly obviously has a limited concept of Sharia to strictly a government system, such that if it doesn’t look like Saudi Arabia or Iran, then there’s no Sharia. The idea that it can be implemented in small doses doesn’t enter his head.

But the publicity had its effect: The Mayor has now officially declared Dearborn a Sharia-free zone. (Discussion question: If I’m a devout Muslim living in Dearborn, and I love Sharia law and try to practice it, am I offended right now? Discuss why not.)

O’Reilly next sent Sharron Angle a letter explaining that Muslims fought in the War of Independence, and offering to take her on a tour of the Rouge Plant. More accurately, he said he would “personally escort” her to “any venue she you choose to visit in our community.” Jack! You old dog! Maybe they could see the old La Shish, or drive by the old Al-Mabarrat Charitable Organization, both closed up for supporting Hezbollah -- both in obedience to Sharia. Or maybe the footbaths at UM-Dearborn). Then they could cruise Marshalls and ask one of the many chador-clad customers why she’s dressed that way -- what with there being no Sharia in Dearborn.

They shouldn’t miss dropping by the Islamic Center of America, to see what a Sharia-free Shia mosque looks like. Just make sure Sharron puts on a headscarf first before stepping foot inside.

In an interview with the Press and Guide Mayor O’Reilly says all these claims about creeping Sharia in Dearborn all have their source in “a group calling themselves the Acts 17 Apologetics. They are the first people who started claims of sharia law in Dearborn. In their own minds, they are experts on the Koran and the Bible, who think their interpretation is the correct one … they think Muslims should not be allowed to stay in the country unless they convert. You want to talk about unconstitutional? Nothing is less constitutional than that.”

I’ve never heard one scrap of evidence that Acts 17 stands for the proposition that unless Muslims convert they should be deported.

More important, many of us in this area were saying Sharia is spreading in Dearborn long before we ever heard of these missionaries. I’ve been blogging here since 2006. Debbie Schlussel has blogged about Dearborn much longer than that. The awareness amongst Dearborn residents of the threat of radical Islam was awakened, just as it was for the rest of the country, on September 11, 2001.

I think what we have here are two politicians responding to questions for which they weren’t prepared. In the Mayor’s case, he sounds as if he simply doesn’t know, and really doesn’t want to know, what’s going on with Islam in Dearborn. All he wants is to keep CAIR from his office door and his Arab constituents from being unhappy.

As to what Sharron Angle said, I think she was right. With all the knucklehead second-guessing of anything anyone says within range of YouTube or other media outlets, I’m a big proponent of not reading too much into incomplete, poorly worded statements that are, to say the least, ambiguous. I’m not sure what Angle meant by “militant terrorist situation.” But the context was an audience question referring to a TV broadcast about “Muslims wanting to take over the United States,” and “taking over a city in Michigan.” Her reference to Frankford, Texas was clearly in error, so I’d give her the benefit of the doubt that she had another community in mind and inadvertently referred to Frankford instead.

What she did say clearly was that the situation with militant terrorism, “isn’t a widespread thing, but it is enough that we need to address, and we have been addressing it.” That happens to be my own view of it. And her declaration that American cities should be under Constitutional law, not Sharia law, is absolutely correct. That she said the problem was not widespread, but still a concern, ought to spare her being portrayed in the media as an hysteric. But could we really expect that kind of restraint from the media when reporting on conservative candidates?

O’Reilly’s denials, on the other hand, were made in what should have been the cold light of day. To a fault, he simply wants to focus elsewhere than on the controversies arising from Islam. His letter to Angle shows how much he’d rather mention “The Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village, which are visited each year by 1.5 million people from across the world”, and all “the automotive workers who were flocking to Detroit to earn the unheard of wage of $5 a day at the For Motor Co. Model ‘T’ Plant.”

We all haven’t forgotten that Mayor Jack sat on the story about the arrest of Houssein Zorkot for four days because he didn’t want us to connect terrorist activity up with September 11.

To say categorically there’s no Sharia in Dearborn is like saying categorically that there are no foreign cars in Dearborn, because Dearborn “has been the home of the Ford Motor Company since 1917!” The two facts can co-exist, and they do. Sharia can still be alive and well in Dearborn regardless of how many boys at Fordson High dress like gangbangers, or how many churches still have their doors open.

But the Mayor has no idea about any of this, does he?

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Take It Up With Your Psychiatrist

I don’t care what anybody says about Rudy Giuliani. When it comes to fighting back against jihad, I still think he’s great. And he’s not afraid of exercising his free speech. From The Hill:

Giuliani questions NPR funding

BLUE BELL, Pa. — Rudy Giuliani defended former NPR analyst Juan Williams Friday, saying Williams was fired for simply explaining his feelings.

Juan Williams just expressed something that a lot of people feel, Giuliani told the crowd at a campaign rally for Republican Senate candidate Pat Toomey. And he gets fired for it?

Earlier this week in an interview on Fox News, Williams said seeing passengers in Muslim garb on a plane makes him nervous. “Look Bill, I'm not a bigot. You know the kind of books I've written about the civil rights movement in this country, Williams told Bill O'Reilly in an interview. But when I get on a plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Muslim garb and I think, you know, they are identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried. I get nervous.”

Shortly after the comments, NPR decided to sever its contract with Williams.

The resulting firestorm saw several Republican lawmakers calling on Congress to defund NPR.

Giuliani appeared to join that call Friday, calling into question NPR's funding.

“We put taxpayer money into that censorship program,” Giuliani said of NPR.Giuliani, who was mayor of New York during 9/11, reminded the crowd that on the evening of September 11, 2001, he warned New Yorkers not to single out Arab-Americans.

But the former mayor added that it is irresponsible to ignore the threat of Islamic extremists, noting he doesn't understand why anyone would be offended at that notion.

“I don't care who's offended by it,” Giuliani said. “And if you are offended by it, there's something wrong with you.”

PBS and CAIR Combat 'Defamation' of Islam

You shouldn’t miss this Big Government post on the relationship between public broadcasting and CAIR in combating “defamation” of Islam:
PBS Sends Senior Editor as Presenter to CAIR Conference on ‘Defaming Islam”

Posted by Christine Brim Oct 23rd 2010

The news about NPR firing Juan Williams is opening the eyes of many in the media and public to the extraordinary rules of censorship that CAIR, other Muslim Brotherhood groups, and the “Establishment Left” impose to restrict free speech. But it’s not just NPR that responds to CAIR’s political pressure which may in itself be a violation of the Foreign Agents Registration Act. On October 9, 2010 – less than two weeks before NPR fired Williams on October 21 – the federally-funded sister agency Public Broadcasting System (PBS) sent Joel Schwartzberg, Senior Editor of PBS Interactive to be a presenter at the CAIR Leadership Conference preceding their 16th annual national banquet.

Here’s a copy of the 36 page CAIR program for the conference and banquet. . . Page 4 lists Schwartzberg in the 9:15 -10:45 a.m. session (Room B): “Becoming a Dynamic Public Speaker (Room B).” Page 6 provides Schwartzberg’s biography under the title “CAIR Leadership Conference Trainers 2010.”

There’s more. PBS sent Schwartzberg to train “CAIR Leadership” knowing that CAIR had advertised the conference for several weeks listing the #1 reason to attend as, “You’re tired of seeing Islam defamed and want to do something about it.” . . . [V]iew the
entire saved pdf of the conference promotional web page.

To make this clear: PBS sent Schwartzberg to train “CAIR leadership” at a conference held specifically to “do something about” the alleged problem of “Islam defamed.” The use of the concept of “defamation” of Islam should be a red flag alert to Congressional funders of PBS: CAIR’s conference publicity followed the instructions of the Organization of the Islamic Conference to enforce Shariah blasphemy and defamation laws in the U.S. – in this case, with the support of publicly funded PBS staff.
The rest here.

If Renee Montagne Broadcasts in a Niqab, and No One Can See It, Does It Make a Sound?

It’s been a while since CAIR’s had a victory. But credit -- no, blame -- for the firing of Juan Williams by NPR has to go CAIR, at least in significant part. I know George Soros and Media Matters played their role. But out of all them it’s CAIR whose specific object is to halt all criticism of Islam in the United States.

They haven’t done it yet. And getting a figure as popular and as well-respected by both liberals and conservatives as Juan Williams fired is backfiring on CAIR. It’s already backfired on NPR, whose online “Contact us” function crashed beneath the hail of negative comments in response to the action.

On C-Span’s Washington Journal on Friday I noticed that among the liberal callers, who invariably express hatred for Fox News and abide by dhimmi rules when discussing Islam, no one thought firing Williams was the right thing to do.

But getting Williams fired shows CAIR still has a lot of power to intimidate.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

CAIR and Ron Scott Want To Know: 'Where's Mike Nifong When We Need Him?'

The Detroit Free Press ran this last week:

Group slams U.S. report on imam's death

The Detroit Coalition Against Police Brutality today called the
Justice Department announcement Wednesday that there were no civil rights violations in the shooting death of Imam Luqman Ameen Abdullah “disingenuous and insincere.”

Ron Scott, the coalition’s lead spokesman, said the Justice Department released the statement clearing federal agents as acting appropriately in the Oct. 28 killing at the same time federal civil rights attorneys from Washington were meeting in Detroit with Abdullah’s family, Muslim and African-American leaders and the coalition.

“While we and members of the community were attempting to meet in good faith … they were already releasing a statement to the media that th actions of the law enforcement officers involved in the Imam Luqman Ameen Abdullah killing were justified. This compromised any real sense of objectivity and consideration which may have emerged from our discussions,” Scott said in a prepared statement today.

“How can you discuss the sentiment of the community and its significance while a news release is presented which indicates that you have already made you’re your decision? This is disingenuous and insincere,” he said.

Investigating a possible civil rights violation is no different than investigating any other possible violation of law: the subject either violated the law or he didn’t. Investigative findings mustn’t go outside the facts of what happened, nor how the law defines a violation.

In other words, what the “community” feels about it all shouldn’t count for a damn thing.

Any society committed to the rule of law would recognize it as the worst possible injustice – far worse even than a sloppy investigation that overlooks actual evidence of guilt – to accuse an innocent person of wrongdoing just to satisfy some baying interest group’s appetite for raw meat.

Nothing in the response of CAIR or Ron Scott’s Detroit Coalition Against Police Brutality has made any sense, but this response to the DOJ findings beats all. As he denounces the findings as “insincere” Scott asks the rhetorical question, “How can you discuss the sentiment of the community and its significance while a news release is presented which indicates that you have already made you’re your decision?” But unless the investigators’ decision about the facts was going to be weighted one way or the other based on community sentiment about what happened, there’s no reason at all not to make the decision and release it regardless of such sentiment.

Unless there’s a tacit understanding that the facts will take a back seat to mollycoddling a favored minority. (See Mike Nifong).

It’s not the job of the civil rights division to find out what makes X minority community ifeel mistreated and then dutifully find an example of X’s mistreatment to punish. Can Scott really be serious that the DOJ was supposed to let negotiations with Muslim leaders determine whether or not to charge federal agents with civil rights violations, regardless of what the evidence shows?

Their idea that “good faith” meetings between Justice Department officials and Muslim leaders to “discuss the sentiment of the community” could ever play any legitimate role in what is supposed to be a fact-finding investigation shows just how lacking in good faith these groups actually are.

Monday, October 11, 2010

A Horse Is a Horse, Except When He's an Undercover Fascist Tea Party Spy

(Mrs. Clancy and I went to see “Secretariat” this past Saturday night. We both liked it. But this isn’t a review. TRC).

Some folks are forever being accused of “Islamophobia.” Depending on who it is hurling the charge, “Islamophobia” can mean anything from criticizing Islam -- at all -- to drawing attention to the rising mountain of evidence that there are a very large number of Muslims on the planet in love with the idea of either reducing us to slavery or killing us.

What is never meant by the term “Islamophobia” is what, logically, should be meant, which is a strong irrational fear of something that poses little or no danger, in this case, Islam.

I’m no psychiatrist, but I’ll bet there are few case histories where an arachnophobic actually has video of 19 spiders knocking down two 100-story towers full of people or suicide-bombing a bus full of Jewish schoolkids.

That aside, there is something like a strong, irrational fear of Christians going around, and it’s getting worse. Time was it took a depiction of a babe in a manger or a cross to constitute an intimidating crossing of the line. Now people are going over the edge if a female movie lead wears a pearl necklace or a black character plays his role in the script without once keeping it real about how his brother was shot down by police in a case of racial mistaken identity.

As one example of this heightened paranoia, I point out last week’s review by Andrew O’Hehir of Salon of the new Disney film, “Secretariat”, "Secretariat": A gorgeous, creepy American myth. In his review O’Hehir believes he recognizes “a work of creepy, half-hilarious master-race propaganda almost worthy of Leni Riefenstahl, and all the more effective because it presents as a family-friendly yarn about a nice lady and her horse.”

Roger Ebert, the film reviewer at the Chicago Sun Times, found O’Hehir’s review so “bizarre”and “insane” he felt the need to write a response. O’Hehir’s review, writes Ebert, “resembles a fevered conspiracy theory”:

In this example , we do not find proof that Obama is a Muslim Communist born in Kenya. No, the news is worse than that. It involves Secretariat, a horse who up until now we innocently thought of as merely very fast. We learn the horse is a carrier not merely of Ron Turcotte's 130 pounds, but of Nazism, racism, Tea Party ideology and the dark side of Christianity.

Oh, and I forgot the Ku Klux Klan: “The movie itself is ablaze with its own crazy sense of purpose,” O'Hehir writes, “ if someone just off-screen were burning a cross on the lawn.”

O’Hehir also finds it awful that “Secretariat” -- which is set in 1972-73 -- devotes insufficient screentime to the Vietnam War and the Watergate hearings taking place at the same time. But that’s not really phobic, just an example of a liberal’s political filter at work. (“You could hardly pick a period in post-Civil War American history more plagued by chaos and division and general insanity (well, OK -- you could pick right now.”). When you view all reality through a lens of progressive values, no story is a “true” story unless it drags in meaningful references to race, gender (sic), homelessness, war, AIDS, and the environmental crisis. For that matter, I, too, also picked up on the way “Secretariat” failed to include any references to the wildly popular “Sonny & Cher” TV show.

Ebert, when he’s finished taking apart O’Hehir’s review, confesses “I have no theories about why it was written.”

Well, I have. O’Hehir had a phobic reaction to this film. He feels films like this are inviting audiences to believe in something, “believe in -- well, in something unspecified but probably pretty scary.” And the manifestation of his phobia is his genuine belief that “Secretariat” is a propaganda tool chockfull of subversive Christian themes and Tea-Party values.

Although the troubling racial subtext is more deeply buried here than in "The Blind Side" (where it's more like text, period), "Secretariat" actually goes much further, presenting a honey-dipped fantasy vision of the American past as the Tea Party would like to imagine it, loaded with uplift and glory and scrubbed clean of multiculturalism and social discord. In the world of this movie, strong-willed and independent-minded women like Chenery are ladies first (she's like a classed-up version of Sarah Palin feminism), left-wing activism is an endearing cute phase your kids go through (until they learn the hard truth about inheritance taxes), and all right-thinking Americans are united in their adoration of a Nietzschean Überhorse, a hero so superhuman he isn't human at all. . . . Big Red himself is a big, handsome MacGuffin, symbolic window dressing for a quasi-inspirational fantasia of American whiteness and power.

Look, write this shit in college it only means you’re sucking up for a good grade; write this way in middle age and you have a seriously distorted point of view. I’m only surprised O’Hehir overlooked how Secretariat’s owner, Penny Chenery, played by Diane Lane, has a last name diabolically only a single letter away from that of The Devil Himself -- Bush-Chenery, anyone? -- now how’s that for subtext?

Ebert does a much more effective job of describing O’Hehir’s breakdown than I could do, except he keeps flashing his own liberal credentials, (“I am a liberal” . . . “a lifelong liberal”. . . .”an admirer of Darwin”. . .), and takes an unnecessary shot at Sarah Palin (who, like “Vietnam” and “Nixon”, is never mentioned in the film).

And you can count on it, it’s Palin who terrifies O’Hehir, and behind Palin, the Tea Party, and behind the Tea Party, Christianity, even in its most vestigial form as the erstwhile teacher of basic morals and manners to the secular culture. O’Hehir wants you to know it was Randall Wallace who directed this movie, “one of mainstream Hollywood's few prominent Christians, [who] has spoken openly about his faith and his desire to make movies that appeal to "people with middle-American values.”

Spoken openly about his faith? Go figure, it’s Hollyweird, right? Why not just French kiss Mel Gibson at the Oscars? (Oh, yeah, Gibson’s not welcome any more). Wallace’s shamelessly “out” Christian faith is why O’Hehir thinks “it's legitimate to wonder exactly what Christian-friendly and ‘middle-American’ inspirational values are being conveyed here, or whether they're just providing cover for some fairly ordinary right-wing ideology and xenophobia.”

O’Hehir even imagines that the film’s antagonist, “...the villainous, swarthy and vaguely terrorist-flavored Pancho Martin (Nestor Serrano), trainer of Sham, Secretariat's archrival. (Even the horse's name is evil!”), was planted in the picture, probably to get middle Americans to oppose the Ground Zero mosque.

Ebert’s measured response is that the actor really does look like Pancho Martin. “And as for the hapless Sham, the horse with the evil name, for Christ's sake, O'Hehir, that was the horse's damn name.”

What we’re witnessing is nothing other than O’Hehir’s phobic reaction to Christianity, even if it’s a watered-down, harmless version of the faith as a source of homely virtues like perservence, loyalty, and family affection. We’re at the point now where if some critics so much as glimpse a “housewife” onscreen pouring her husband’s coffee, there’d better damn well be a reference to race riots or My Lai or a pair of mopey homosexuals nearby to provide balance and “context.”

Otherwise, it’s just middle-class xenophobia. Otherwise, you may as well just be reading to us out of the Bible.