Enough of the U.N.

Enough of the U.N.Anne BayefskyNew York Sun, September 12, 2006 

Today marks the opening of the 61st annual session of the United Nations General Assembly…  Just last Friday the U.N. gave the world its answer to 9/11. The General Assembly adopted its first-ever “Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy.” The title is grand. The substance was not: it called for the [implementation] of a General Assembly resolution from 1991, which draws a distinction between terrorism and the “legitimacy of the struggle of national liberation movements.” The document was also telling for what it omitted: a definition of terrorism, a reference to state sponsorship of terrorism and a call to sanction states that harbor and assist terrorists. Worst of all it began, not with defeat of terrorists, but with “measures to address conditions conducive to the spread of terrorism, which it describes as “prevent[ing] the defamation of religions, religious values, beliefs and cultures,” “eradicate[ing] poverty” and reducing youth unemployment… The previous post-9/11 record was just as bad. Shortly after 9/11 the U.N. created a new body to take the lead on responding to terrorist threats — the Security Council’s Counter-Terrorism Committee. To this day, the CTC has never named a single terrorist, terrorist organization, or state sponsor of terrorism. What does such a record do for the war effort? It leaves the stewardship of the war against terrorism in the hands of an agent that cannot define it. 

The U.N.’s top human rights body for six decades, the Commission on Human Rights, was charged with identifying and responding to human rights abuse. During that time, 30% of all its resolutions condemning a specific state for human rights violations were directed at Israel, while not one resolution was adopted condemning states like China, Syria, or Zimbabwe. In recent years, Libya served as Chair. In the name of enhanced credibility, the Commission was replaced this past spring by a Human Rights Council. Its members include Cuba, China, and Saudi Arabia. Since June, the Council has adopted three resolutions and held two special sessions critical of human rights violations in specific states. Now 100% of them are on Israel. In the meantime, thousands die in killing fields and deserts and torture chambers around the world…

 Last weekend U.N. Secretary General, Kofi Annan, decided to go to Iran and shake hands with President Ahmadinejad. The message Annan delivered, in his own words, was that “The international community should not isolate Iran.” Mr. Ahmadinejad has embraced genocide, called for the eradication of a U.N. member state, denied the truth of the Holocaust even though its ashes form the cornerstone of U.N. itself, and broken his treaty obligations to end the pursuit of nuclear weapons. Yet the Secretary-General still believes the President of Iran does not deserve isolation. What does such a message do for winning the war [on terror]? It tells us to appease, apologize, and run away. The U.N. system produces hundreds of reports, resolutions, letters, journals, and circulars critical of human rights abuse by particular states… Of the top ten countries of human rights concern to the U.N. in 2005, Israel was first and America was 10th. Iran was 18th. The human rights actions statistics for 2006 are even starker. So far Israel is first and America is 3rd — of all 192 countries on earth… Time and again the United Nations has stood opposed to America’s attempts to ensure a decent world order, for itself, and for others. America has tried to galvanize legal and political forces by calling the millions dead, displaced, and dying in Sudan “genocide.” But the U.N. reported last year that events in Darfur didn’t meet their criteria for genocide. America has called for immediate sanctions to stop Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. But the U.N. Security Council called only for another report. Published a week ago, the International Atomic Energy Agency said that it “remains unable to…verify the correctness and completeness of Iran’s declarations with a view to confirming the peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear programme.” And we’re meant to wait. America has named Hezbollah a terrorist organization. But the U.N. refuses to do so—notwithstanding the 3,900 missiles directed at Israeli civilians this summer. On the contrary, said Deputy Secretary-General Mark Malloch-Brown, “It is not helpful to couch this [Lebanon] war in the language of international terrorism”—this because Hezbollah is “completely separate and different from Al Qaeda.” America has worked arduously to support the nascent democracy in Iraq. But the U.N. has dragged its feet responding to appeals to train Iraqi judges and prosecutors… Who are these opponents, wrapped in the U.N. flag, who inculcate the view that American unilateralism and non-cooperation is the root cause of the world’s ills? [They] include U.N. staffers like the secretary-general and his deputy, who claim they are hapless functionaries operating at the mercy of member states — notwithstanding self-motivated trips to Iran, handshakes with Hezbollah, “doing business” with Saddam Hussein, and blaming middle American ignorance for the credibility gap. They are the 45 “Not Free” nations — to use Freedom House labels — who pass judgment on others in the General Assembly. These are the state sponsors of terrorism. The ones who don’t let women vote or drive, or who kill them in the name of “honor.” The ones who raise their children to die while murdering as many others of a different faith as possible… The ones who claim that authoring a cartoon, a movie, or a book can justify a death sentence. They are also the 58 “Partly-Free” countries. Some of these are cronies, others are just cowards. Some are like-minded with their more notorious neighbors, others are very dependent. Together, these nations represent the majority of the 132 developing states and the majority of 192 U.N. members. They are unified not by a desire to democratize, or even to develop, since many are quite content with kingdoms and with servitude in their own backyards. They are a team because they are adroit at U.N. politics, and they have learned that the cartel is good for business. This holds true particularly for the largest single bloc amongst them — the 56-member Organization of the Islamic Conference… There is an alternative, an antidote to the self-doubt and moral relativism planted in our midst by Turtle Bay. Senator Frist calls it a “council of democracies outside of the U.N. system … [that would] truly monitor, examine and expose human rights abuses around the globe.” Such a gathering is an idea whose time has come: the United Democratic Nations — an international organization of democracies, by democracies, and for democracies. It is time to say enough. (This material is drawn from Anne Bayefsky’s remarks yesterday at a Hudson Institute conference.) 

Another shameful UN momentEditorial, Jerusalem Post, Sep. 20, 2006 Mahmoud Ahmadinejad did not bang his shoe on his desk at the UN General Assembly, as did Soviet leader Nikita Krushchev in 1960. He did not address world leaders wearing a pistol, as did Yasser Arafat in 1974. The Iranian leader’s appearance may well, however, be recorded as an even more shameful moment in the checkered history of an organization supposedly dedicated to advancing international peace and security. The leader of Iran is a Holocaust denier who, not surprisingly, also denies Israel’s right to exist. From other podiums, Ahmadinejad has called for “wiping Israel off the map.” This is incitement to genocide, and he continued it, albeit in more polite terms, from the UN podium. A good part of his speech was dedicated, not to opposing Israel’s policies, but to decrying the “tragedy” of its establishment… In [Kofi Annan’s] final speech as secretary-general to the gathered leaders, he [said:] “We might like to think of the Arab-Israeli conflict as just one regional conflict among many… But it is not. No other conflict carries such a powerful symbolic and emotional charge among people far removed from the battlefield… “As long as the Security Council is unable to end this conflict, and the now nearly 40-year-old occupation, by bringing both sides to accept and implement its resolutions, so long will respect for the United Nations continue to decline. So long, too, will our impartiality be questioned… And so long will our devoted and courageous staff, instead of being protected by the blue flag, find themselves exposed to rage and violence, provoked by policies they neither control nor support.” With this, the UN’s leader waved not a blue flag, but a white flag of surrender to the very forces he hoped to combat. Why is he blaming “both sides” for a war, not to establish a Palestinian state, but to destroy Israel? Why does he imply that Israel is provoking “rage and violence” against UN forces, rather than condemning that violence and the Arab war to destroy Israel of which it is a part? The Security Council has indeed failed to enforce its resolutions because, time and again, it has stood silent as Israel is attacked and leapt into action to stop Israel from defending itself. The UN’s silence in the face of Iran’s open calls for Israel’s destruction is an abdication not only of its responsibility to enforce its own calls for peace with Israel, but a mockery of its own charter and the Genocide Convention. The prospect of removing Iran from the UN or at least denying its leader the UN’s most prestigious podium has not been considered, let alone acted upon. Not only was Ahmadinejad allowed in the UN, but Annan himself met with him just weeks ago in Teheran. When bullies and terrorists crush their peoples and feel free to lecture the leaders of nations at the UN, it is a bad sign for the forces of freedom in the world. Speech, whether on our side or theirs, cannot obscure the stark reality as described by eminent historian Bernard Lewis: “Either we bring them freedom, or they destroy us.” 

Same old UNIFIL?Editorial, Jerusalem Post, September 25, 2006 

Since the cease-fire took effect a month ago in Lebanon, the existing 2,000-member UNIFIL contingent has expanded to about 5,500 troops, and it is expected to grow to 8,000 in November. Time and again, Israel and the US were assured that the new, more robust UNIFIL would be nothing like the old, discredited force, which acted as human shields for the massive Hizbullah weapons buildup that led to the recent war.

Signs are already growing, however, that the “new” UNIFIL, though larger and better armed, will not act appreciably differently to the “old” UNIFIL that has existed since 1978.

 …UNIFIL commander Maj.-Gen. Alain Pellegrini [has] explained that UN Security Council Resolution 1701 resulted in new rules of engagement for UNIFIL. Previously, UNIFIL could only open fire to defend itself. Now, it is authorized to use force to implement Resolution 1701, which requires the disarmament of Hizbullah. 

Yet when asked whether UNIFIL would intervene against Hizbullah forces on their way to attack Israel over the international border, Pellegrini said that UNIFIL was in Lebanon to “assist the Lebanese army…and to inform them and advise them how they can do their job.” UNIFIL was not there to disarm or engage Hizbullah, and if it saw “something dangerous” unfolding, it would “inform the Lebanese army” and would take action only if asked to do so by the Lebanese army.

Pellegrini was less circumspect when it came to Israel. Speaking of continued Israeli intelligence-gathering overflights of Lebanon, he called them “unacceptable and dangerous…violations [of 1701 that] are not justifiable with the deployment of the Lebanese army and the enhancement of UNIFIL.”

For the first time in 40 years, the Lebanese army has been deploying along the border with Israel. On Thursday, however, hundreds of Hizbullah supporters marched up to the border fence near Metulla, waving Hizbullah flags…

If there is any lesson to be learned from the last war, it is that the only way to prevent a renewed conflict is to prevent Hizbullah from being in a position to start one. This means disarming Hizbullah, and keeping it away from the border, not just “sharing” that border and standing by as it becomes a potential flashpoint. It is hard to see how this can happen if UNIFIL refuses to use its new capabilities to fulfill its new mandate.

Preventing the next war also means UNIFIL actively working to at least report violations of 1701 by Lebanon, Hizbullah and Syria, not just violations by Israel. These Israeli violations are necessitated by the failure of Lebanon and UNIFIL to fully implement that resolution’s essence, namely preventing the recreation of a tinderbox.

Watchdog Group Disputes FBI’s Claims on E-Mails

The Threat of Lawful Islamism — links work on this page follow them all = very enlightening

A Project of the Middle East Forum

http://www.meforum.org/

Summary: Launched April 21, 2006, Islamist Watch combats the ideas and institutions of nonviolent, radical Islam in the United States and other Western countries. It exposes the far-reaching goals of Islamists, works to reduce their power, and seeks to strengthen moderate Muslims.

Introduction: The Threat of Lawful Islamism

Islamists ultimately seek hegemonic control via a worldwide caliphate that applies the Islamic law in full. Afghanistan under the Taliban offers one model of what they would establish globally.

Terrorism is one method to advance these projects but it is not the only one. Indeed, the activities of nonviolent Islamists arguably will prove a more effective tactic in the long term. For while the public intuitively understands the threat of terrorism and is mobilized by it, and while states have well-developed institutions (law enforcement, intelligence agencies, the military, the justice system) to protect and fight against it, the activities of nonviolent extremists are not alarming and institutions do not exist to deal with this problem. And how can terrorists impose their will on whole societies?

The Progress of Lawful Islamism

Quietly, lawfully, peacefully, Islamists do their work throughout the West to impose aspects of Islamic law, win special privileges for themselves, shut down criticism of Islam, create Muslim-only zones, and deprive women and non-Muslims of their full civil rights.

Lawful Islamists advance their cause through lobbying politicians, intimidating the media, threatening international boycotts, making predatory use of the legal system, advancing novel legislation, influencing the contents of school textbooks, and in other ways exploiting the freedoms of an open society. They advance their agenda in incremental steps, each of which in itself is minor but in the aggregate point to fundamental changes in society. Here is a sampling of such steps taken by non-Muslims to accommodate Islamists:

Perhaps most alarming is how the Islamists currently dominate the Muslim political scene in every Western society, without exception. They control the mosques, publish the weeklies, host the Internet sites, run the schools, write the op-eds, appear on talk shows, engage in ecumenical activities, and enjoy access to politicians.

Resisting Lawful Islamism

The fight against insidious Islamism has two components. The first is to widen the “war on terror” from violent enemies to political enemies. The war needs to be understood to involve scholarship, think tank research, textbooks, campus activities, the media, press relations, philanthropy, corporate decisions, political lobbying, lawsuits, feature movies, toys, computer games, and much else.

The second is to identify and encourage the work of truly moderate Muslims who, working with non-Muslims, can help reduce the power of the Islamists. Moderate Muslims have several key roles: fighting the application of Islamic law (as in Ontario), engaging in undercover work (for example, the work of journalist Mazher Mahmood), gathering materials (such as those used in the Freedom House report on mosque literature), exposing Islamist writings (such as the work of Zuhdi Jasser), strengthening anti-Islamist efforts (for example, Ahmed Subhy Mansour’s criticisms of the Islamic Society of Boston). Ultimately, anti-Islamist Muslims have the burden of coming up with a modern, moderate, and good-neighborly vision of Islam.

Islamist Watch

The creative thinking in this more subtle war must be initiated outside the government. Due to the demands of political correctness, state authorities find it difficult to do and say what is needed. Governments have a record of bad judgments and of welcoming Islamists. The FBI, in particular, has a dismal record and law enforcement has not been immune to infiltration by Islamists. Even when it does the right thing, such as funding moderate Islamic institutions, government’s hands are often tied.

Islamist Watch (IW) exists to educate the government, media, religious institutions, the academy, and the business world about lawful Islamism. It focuses on the political, educational, cultural, and legal activities of Islamists in the United States and (to a lesser degree) in other historically non-Muslim countries, especially Western Europe, Canada, and Australia.

IW is not about counterterrorism; and it touches only glancingly on Islamism in traditional Muslim countries such as Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Pakistan.

Islamist Watch Activities

Islamist Watch engages in a three-fold effort of research, advocacy, and activism.

  1. Solid research is the basis for all we do. This entails monitoring lawful Islamists via the Internet and periodicals, cultivating a range of sources, pursuing investigations, and perhaps engaging in undercover work.
  2. IW alerts the public of our results in various formats – articles in newspapers, Internet sites (including Islamist Watch’s own), Congressional testimony, and perhaps books and documentary movies. Particularly dramatic findings will be conveyed via radio and television.
  3. The IW staff meets privately with government officials, editors, producers, academics, and others to explain the real nature of such Islamist organizations as the Council on American-Islamic Relations and the Islamic Society of North America in an effort to prevent any steps that enhance the standing of Islamists. In addition, IW staff identifies genuinely moderate Muslims and explains the need to work with them.

Conclusion: The Need for Islamist Watch

There is much speculation about why no major terrorist attack has taken place in the United States since 9/11. In part, this may be due to improved police work, better immigration controls, and other preventative measures. But there may be another factor: the realization by Islamists that violence is counterproductive. The devastation of 9/11 (as well as that in Bali, Madrid, Beslan, and London) led to a heightened public awareness of Islamism and slowed down the hitherto easy penetration by lawful Islamists into Western countries. To the extent that Islamists recognize the value of lawful methods, they will rely increasingly on legal and political means rather than on violent and terrorist ones. This implies that the work of Islamist Watch will likely become increasingly central to the preservation of Western values.

Moshe Sharon Explains Middle Eastern Realities — links on this page work use them

Moshe Sharon Explains Middle Eastern Realities

Moshe Sharon, professor of early Islamic history at Hebrew University, presented an analysis of some key Middle East issues to the annual conference at the Counter-Terrorism Institute in Herzliya yesterday. According to news reports, he focused on three main topics, the nature of Islam, the Iranian drive for nuclear weapons, and the Arab-Israeli conflict. I (who also cut his teeth on early Islamic history) read his analysis with great interest because it so closely parallels what I think, though with a couple of major differences.

The nature of Islam: It is a mistake to differentiate between radical and peaceful Islam. After scornfully dismissing the understanding of Islam by Western politicians, he summarized the spirit of the three main monotheisms as follows:

  • Judaism speaks about national salvation – namely, that at the end of the story, when the world becomes a better place, Israel will be in its own land, ruled by its own king and serving God.
  • Christianity speaks about the idea that every single person in the world can be saved from his sins.
  • Islam speaks about ruling the world, as summarized in a phrase: “Allah sent Muhammad with the true religion so that it should rule over all the religions.” It is not that the whole world will become Muslim instantly, but that it will eventually be subdued under the rule of Muslims. “Islam is a messianic religion… from the very beginning, it talked about the end of the world.” In Islam, “Allah is the king of the end of days.”

The Iranian drive for nuclear weapons: This goal, Sharon goes on, motivates the regime in Tehran. “This is why [Iranian president Mahmoud] Ahmadinejad seeks nuclear weapons.” He concludes that a deep belief in the mahdi, a messiah, drives the Iranian nuclear project.

They truly believe that the Shiite messiah, the Twelfth Imam (also known as the mahdi), is here, and that he will reveal himself… What moves the Iranian government and leadership today is first and foremost the wish to bring about the Twelfth Imam. … How will they bring him? Through an apocalypse. He needs a war. He cannot come into this world without an Armageddon. He wants an Armageddon. The earlier we understand this the better. Ahmadinejad wants nuclear weapons for this.

Sharon concludes: “This is a time of messianic expectation.”

Israel is a side issue for the Iranian leadership, who use it primarily as a means to win support from other Muslims and eventually to dominate them. “But they cannot bluff the Saudis, the Wahhabis… the Shiites are hated by the Sunnis. The Saudis are far more apprehensive of nuclear weapons in the hands of Iran than Israel.”

The Arab-Israeli conflict: “The root of the problem between us [Israelis] and the Arab world is Islam. Islam is not only a religion. It is a culture, politics… a state, Islam is everything. It has been like this, and it will be like this for the foreseeable future,” From the Muslim perspective,

Islamic territory was taken away from Islam by Jews. You know by now that this can never be accepted, not even one meter. So everyone who thinks Tel Aviv is safe is making a grave mistake. Territory which at one time was dominated by Islamic rule, now has become non-Muslim. Non-Muslims are independent of Islamic rule and Jews have created their own independent state. It is anathema. Worse, Israel, a non-Muslim state, is ruling over Muslims. It is unthinkable that non-Muslims should rule over Muslims.

Moshe Sharon

Sharon then waved away the peace treaties and other documents Israel had signed with Arab leaders as “pieces of paper, parts of tactics and strategies… with no meaning.” Muslims see Israel’s establishment as a “reversal of history” and are therefore unable to accept peaceful relations with it. He concluded: “There is no possibility of peace between Israel and the Palestinians whatsoever – for ever.”Comments: (1) Hats off to Moshe Sharon for presenting so clear an interpretation.

(2) My argument with him concerns his extrapolating from the past and implicitly assuming that because something has not happened it will not. On the Islam topic, he is right that there has been no “peaceful Islam,” but that does not preclude its coming into existence in the future. On the Arab-Israeli conflict, one cannot say with such certainty that Muslims will never accept Israel, for things change over time. In the first place, there was increasing Muslim acceptance (however grudging) of Israel during the period 1948-93; second, there are plenty of instances where Muslims lost territories and (again, grudgingly) came to terms with these realities. How many suicide bombers or battles of reconquest have there been in Sicily since 1091, in Spain since 1492, in Greece since 1821, or in India since 1867? Things change over time, never say never. (September 15, 2006)

Mark Foley and the Hypocrites

 L. Brent Bozell

 

 

Mark Foley and the Hypocrites

by L. Brent Bozell III
October 3, 2006
 

It is beyond easy – it is mandatory – to denounce Congressman Mark Foley for his sexually charged electronic mail and Internet messages to teenage males who worked as pages in the House of Representatives. He was right to resign. I hope he’s prosecuted.

It is also beyond easy to recognize how the Democrats have decided to make national political hay out of this ugly sex scandal – as far as we know, a sex talk scandal. On Monday morning, the network news shows were predicting excitedly that this could be a killer issue for Democrats.

“But this is more than just one man’s downfall,” insisted Matt Lauer on NBC. “It could be a major blow to the Republican Party, desperately trying to hold on to control of Congress in the coming midterm elections.” NBC’s story then carried angry soundbites from outraged Democrats.

“Any legislative leader that knew ahead of time and did nothing should resign,” thundered Rep. Sherrod Brown. Then came Sen. Dick Durbin pointing the accusatory finger at the GOP leaders: “The fact that they didn’t stop him, the fact that they didn’t bring in law enforcement — I think they have to be held accountable.” Both ABC and CBS asked Tony Snow on Monday morning whether Republican House leaders should resign.

Stop. Since when have the Democrats ever insisted a politician be held accountable for a sex scandal involving a staffer, let alone the politician’s party leaders? Take Senator Durbin. Did he vote on any impeachment counts against President Clinton for perjury or obstruction of justice over Clinton’s sexual relations with intern Monica Lewinsky?

Did Democrats – the party of feminism, the party that hates sexual harassers – demand accountability when President Clinton was accused of putting Kathleen Willey’s hand on his crotch as she asked for a job? Or demand accountability when President Clinton was accused of dropping his pants in front of Paula Jones and asking that state employee to kiss his genitalia?

You know the answers. Let’s continue.

Did Democrats – who must have chortled at the 1996 GOP convention when NBC anchor Tom Brokaw suggested the Republicans don’t think much about “women’s issues” like rape – demand answers from President Clinton when Juanita Broaddrick tearfully recounted to NBC in 1999 how Bill Clinton raped and brutalized her in a Little Rock hotel in the late 1970s?

Go beyond Clinton to see the media-Democrat complex and its partisan standards on sex scandals. On August 25, 1989, The Washington Times revealed Rep. Barney Frank’s male-prostitution scandal. Frank’s lover, Stephen Gobie, ran an illicit gay sex ring out of Frank’s home and Frank fixed his local parking tickets. Did Frank resign? No. Was there a wave of media pressure on this lawmaker with law-breaking going on in his own home? No. He’s still in the House today.

The press was equally complicit in the politics of silence. The New York Times and the Washington Post did a few stories on inside pages in August, no partisan disaster. The three networks left a vacuum of silence from August 26th until September 12th, when CBS and NBC, but not ABC, mentioned the ethics committee decision in brief, almost meaningless anchor items. Not one ran a full story.

In 1994, news emerged that Democratic Rep. Mel Reynolds had a consensual sexual relationship with Beverly Heard beginning when she was 16. Heard said Reynolds gave her cash at each meeting and supplied her with his pager number and apartment keys. In taped phone conversations, they even plotted group sex with a 15-year-old Catholic high school girl Heard had said wanted to have sex with him. The infamous Reynolds reply: “Did I win the Lotto?” He asked Heard to take photos of the girl’s private parts. Reynolds was convicted of criminal sexual assault, obstruction of justice, and solicitation of child pornography. The networks barely touched on this story as it broke in 1994, and ended with conviction in 1995, which is why, dear reader, I bet you don’t even remember it.

Did the Democrats believe in holding Reynolds accountable? Bill Clinton pardoned him as he left office in 2001. He then went to work as a consultant for Jesse Jackson.

Don’t forget 1983, when Republican Rep. Daniel Crane and Democratic Rep. Gerry Studds were censured by the House for sexual affairs with teenage pages (Studds with a male). Crane was defeated in a Republican primary; Studds arrogantly continued in Congress another thirteen years. On July 14, 1983, when the House ethics committee recommended action, ABC’s Peter Jennings made sure the viewers at home knew Daniel Crane was a hypocrite, who vowed to stand up for the “God-fearing” people when Congress considered legalizing most sex acts in the District of Columbia. He had no embarrassing old quotes for Studds.

The hypocrisy here is as nauseating as the Foley e-mails.

Islam Review lots good info

Lying in Islam