Fred Thompson Presidential Announcement Next Week?

Fred Thompson Presidential Announcement Next Week?

By Nancy Streets
Jun 23, 2007

Fred Thompson is still not officially in the presidential race but is already the frontrunner a recent poll from Rasmussen reports claims.  But all that may change soon, According to WSMV, Thompson will jump in next week.   The news room at WMSV is citing “a source close to the campaign planning that claims that Thompson planned to announce his candidacy

Fred Thompson Presidential Announcement Next Week?
Fred Thompson Presidential Announcement Next Week?

on the steps of the historic Fall School Building Tuesday, but Thompson campaign officials deny that Tuesday’s announcement is an official run for the White House.


“Everything’s in place for Tuesday,” the source told WSMV. “There are three major events built around his announcement.” But Bob Davis, the Tennessee Republican Party Chairman, and Thompson’s former Chief of Staff says “There will not be an annoucement Tuesday.”

Earlier reports have speculated that Thompson would announce in July, close to the Independence Day Holiday.  The source cited that the Thompson campaign has obtained the lease for that building to turn it into a national campaign office.  It sounds as if caution is the order of the day as that doesn’t necessarily mean he will announce his candidacy on that day, though.  Plus he seems to be getting good traction and he is pulling in lots of money with no formal announcement.

Iraqi Army Making Strides In Baquba

Iraqi Army Making Strides In Baquba

Many of the Sunni Arabs welcomed the Iraqi soldiers who followed U.S. infantrymen through the dusty, bomb-scarred streets, which shimmered in the blazing heat. One man offered them glasses of water on a tray, and a woman wept at the sight of them.

iraqi army

Arrowhead Ripper Progress Report:

By Alexandra Zavis
June 24, 2007

BAQUBAH — Lt. Qusai had his doubts last week when he took his men into an insurgent haven in the western part of this city for the first time.

“Honestly, I thought this operation would never be successful because I had information that Al Qaeda had big guns and RPGs,” rocket-propelled grenades, said the Iraqi army commander who provided only one name. “We thought that all the people here are terrorists and everyone is bad, even the women and children.”

To his surprise, many of the Sunni Arabs welcomed the Iraqi soldiers who followed U.S. infantrymen through the dusty, bomb-scarred streets, which shimmered in the blazing heat. One man offered them glasses of water on a tray, and a woman wept at the sight of them.

(Read More)

Kill the Bill: Call the GOP wafflers and sign the Secure Borders Now petition Update: Hutchison to oppose shamnesty? Update: The no’s are rolling in

Obama campaign politicizing tax-emept churches

Obama campaign politicizing tax-emept churches

Ed Lasky
The New York Times has gleefully reported on troubles encountered by Christian consevraive organizations when churches have been used for political purposes. It would undoubtedly attack any GOP politicians who used a church for political purposes. Yet here

it reports deadpan an Obama political event in a church:

Lessons Learned as Obama Shepherds a Following

It was just an organizational meeting for Senator Barack Obama’s New York volunteers, but the gathering this month jammed every pew of a church in the East Village, and the crowd spilled over into not one but two overflow rooms.

All told, 710 people showed up, even though the closest they would get to Mr. Obama, the Illinois Democrat and presidential candidate, that night would be to view a campaign screening of a biographical DVD. They cheered wildly anyway. Many had already formed their own volunteer groups in New York: Brooklyn for Barack, NYC4Obama, the Audacity of Park Slope. Quite a few already had Web sites, neatly designed logos, newsletters and regular meetings.

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Contrary to popular opinion, Israel is the good guy

Contrary to popular opinion, Israel is the good guy

[Given the need for conspiracy theories, otherwise known as propagating “alternate realities”, this is timely. It supports Israpundit’s efforts to challenge conventional thinking in most places as regards, Israel and Serbia.]

“Blaming the Middle Eastern conflict on the Jewish state is an error that could see many people unwittingly complicit in one of history’s worst injustices”, writes Chief Rabbi Warren Goldstein of South Africa in the Sunday Times.

SOMETIMES we make the most fundamental errors. When large numbers of people make mistakes — even monumental ones — it is almost impossible to challenge the resultant prevailing view. It was once the conventional wisdom that the Earth is flat. In ancient times, if anyone dared to claim that the earth was round, they would have been denigrated as being detached from reality. When, in the 16th century, Nicolaus Copernicus dared suggest that the sun was the centre of the solar system and not the Earth, he was regarded as a heretic.

In today’s world, any attempt to explain the Arab-Israeli conflict in terms other than “Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestinian land” and the “denial of Palestinian nationalist aspiration” is often regarded like a declaration that the earth is flat and the centre of the universe. But what if this view is wrong? What if, in terms of understanding the Arab-Israeli conflict, we are living in pre-Copernican times? What if the Jewish state that is considered to be the root of all evil in the Middle East were instead the victim?

What if the apartheid of the Middle East is really one directed against the Jews? And what if Israel is the ANC of the Middle East?

In South Africa, our conflict was caused by a white racist apartheid regime. The ANC was always ready to talk peace, but the regime refused to talk and so the conflict could not be resolved, and the ANC was forced into an armed struggle. Like the ANC, the Israeli government has always been ready to talk peace but has been forced since the birth of the Jewish state into an armed defensive struggle because the anti-Semitic Arab world has not been prepared to talk peace.

The ANC had to wage an armed struggle for many years until white South Africans were ready to talk, and then the long-standing conflict was resolved relatively quickly. Unlike the ANC, Israel has not found genuine negotiating partners, and so its struggle continues, and peace remains a distant dream.

What if Zionism is not colonialism but rather an ancient people’s deep connection to their native, historical and covenantal land? What if the real colonialism is Arab expansionism, which contests a Jewish state on even 1/520th of the area of Arab lands? Nearly 4000 years, ago the forefathers of the Jewish People, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, lived in the land of Israel, which God had promised to them and to their descendants forever. That promise was confirmed at Mount Sinai, and was delivered upon by G-d through Joshua, after the death of Moses, more than 3300 years ago, when the Jewish People entered the land after being liberated from Egyptian slavery and oppression.

About 3000 years ago, King David established Jerusalem as the capital city of the Promised Land. The Jewish people lived in the land of Israel for 850 years until their expulsion by invading Babylonians. They returned in large numbers 70 years afterwards and remained for many centuries until their eviction by the Roman Empire. Despite unremitting antisemitism and persecution, some Jewish communities managed to remain in Israel during the long interval between the Roman dispersion and the re-establishment of the Jewish state in 1948.

What if the dispute has never been about Palestinian statehood but really about the destruction of the Jews and the only Jewish state on Earth? In 1917, the Balfour Declaration, confirmed later by international law through the League of Nations, declared the British Mandate of Palestine to be a national homeland for the Jewish people, recognising 4000 years of Jewish connection to the land, and the injustice of the destruction of ancient Israel by the Romans and the forced removal of the Jewish people.

In 1922 the British took 76% of the land designated for a Jewish state and allocated it instead to the Arabs, creating east of the Jordan River a new country called Transjordan, later to be known as Jordan, which to this day has a Palestinian majority.

In 1947, the United Nations voted to establish two states — one Arab and one Jewish — west of the Jordan river on the remaining 24% of the original portion of land allocated for a Jewish state by the international community. In spite of this reduction to their original portion, the Jews accepted the offer, which was then rejected by the Arabs. This was the beginning of a long history of Arab rejectionism.

And so, in 1948, the newly reborn state of Israel was invaded by Arab armies from Egypt, Lebanon, Iraq, Syria and the Arab Legion, all of which made it quite clear that they intended to destroy the tiny Jewish state at its rebirth and to massacre its citizens, many of whom were Holocaust survivors.

Israel survived the war, and from 1948 to 1967, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip were in Arab hands and there was no “occupation” of these territories . If the cause for the Arab-Israeli conflict is the “occupation” of the West Bank and Gaza, then why did the conflict rage throughout these years unabated, with continued Arab refusal to recognise Israel and to make peace with its Jewish neighbour?

Why was it that in mid-1967, just before the Six Day War, and before the West Bank and Gaza fell into Jewish hands, Arab leaders called for the destruction of Israel? What “occupation” was at issue? Why did Syrian President Hafiz al-Assad order his soldiers to attack Jewish civilian targets to “pave the Arab roads with the skulls of Jews”?

For the 19 years that Jordan controlled the West Bank and Egypt the Gaza Strip, the Arab world had the opportunity of establishing another Palestinian state in those territories, and chose not to. Why not? If the conflict is about Palestinian statehood, then why was there no talk whatever of a Palestinian state for all those 19 years? After the Six Day War, Israel immediately tried to enter into negotiations with the Arab world about the political future of the West Bank and Gaza. The response came from the Khartoum Conference of all the Arab States on September 1 1967, in the form of the infamous three nos : “No peace, no negotiation, no recognition.” And so, when in 2000 at Camp David, Yassar Arafat rejected without making a counter-offer at all, Israel’s proposed 95% of the West Bank and Gaza as well as land compensation for the remaining 5%, his rejection was wholly consistent with Arab rejectionism of any Jewish presence at all.

If the Arab-Israeli conflict is about a Palestinian state, then there has always been an obvious solution of two states living in peace side by side. The conflict is more fundamental and therefore, all the more intractable, and is really about Arab rejection of the very presence and existence of a Jewish state, and probably any Jews at all, in the heart of the Middle East. And so the very charter of Hamas calls for the murder of all Jews, worldwide. And rockets from Gaza continue to target Israeli civilians even after Israel’s evacuation. And threats of genocide and a second Holocaust, together with denial of the first, emanate from Iran. And the Arab world is awash with the most rabid and pernicious antisemitism.

What if the war directed against Israel is really the global war of fundamentalist tyranny against freedom and democracy? Then indeed, all of those who believe, with the best of intentions, that they are defending a vulnerable victim, are actually being complicit in one of the worst injustices in the history of human civilisation. They will have sided with the forces of death and destruction, of fear and prejudice. What if the world is siding against the only beacon of freedom and democracy in the Middle East, thereby endangering us all, because the fate of Jews is often a sign portending the future? Hitler came after the Jews first, and then he attacked the world. Suicide bombings began in Jerusalem and then migrated to New York, Bali, Madrid, London and Nairobi.

We need clarity to understand these tumultuous times. We also need an ultimate vision of peace and reconciliation between Arab and Jew. The conflict in the Middle East is between brothers, and that is the real tragedy. We are all the children of Abraham; Jews are the children of his son Isaac, and Arabs the children of his son Ishmael. The Talmud tells us that, although the sons of Abraham fought for many years, when Abraham was buried in Hebron, Isaac and Ishmael were reconciled at his grave. Let us all pray to God that we will merit to see the day when brother will once again be reconciled with brother in the Middle East.

Posted by Ted Belman @ 9:18 am |

Our Terrorists Are Better Than Your Terrorists

Our Terrorists Are Better Than Your Terrorists
Supporting Fatah, the Bush administration makes a deal with the devil.

By Andrew C. McCarthy

President Bush’s stirring post-9/11 message that regimes the world over have to choose between aligning with civilization or with terrorists should officially be interred in war-torn “Palestine.” Seriousness about the doctrine is the only realistic way to defeat our enemies, and now we make a mockery of it. A mockery built on the trifecta-fiction that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is an avatar of peace, that his Fatah faction has aligned with civilization, and that the Palestinian people — the ones who freely chose to install Hamas as their parliamentary majority and who have trademarked “Intifada” as an instrument of statecraft — are somehow worth prostituting ourselves over.

In the Palestinian civil war, the Bush administration has unabashedly cast its lot with Fatah. The United States, in the midst of its own global war against Islamic radicalism, is promising additional millions in foreign aid for a cabal which maintains its own jihadist wing, and which is so thoroughly corrupt — having pocketed much of the foreign aid billions that poured in over the last two decades — that Palestinians opted for the more transparent Hamas terrorists when given the option.

Fatah is the creation of the late terror master, Yasser Arafat. It is currently led by Abbas, formerly Arafat’s close aid. When last we left Abbas, the administration’s favorite “moderate,” he was laying a wreath at The Great Man’s grave — the Palestinians, by the way, have turned the site into an Arafat shrine, telling us everything we need to know about them.

Abbas proceeded to urge a throng of 50,000 Palestinians to re-aim their guns at the “occupation” (that would be Israel) instead of turning them on each other: “[W]ith the will and determination of its sons, Fatah has and will continue,” he brayed. “We will not give up our principles and we have said that rifles should be directed against the occupation…. We have a legitimate right to direct our guns against Israeli occupation….”

That was less than six months ago — despite administration assertions on Monday that Abbas is “a partner who is committed to peace.” And none of it was a surprise. When Abbas was seeking election in 2005, he declared to a cheering mob in Gaza that Palestinian terrorists being sought by Israel were “heroes fighting for freedom.”

And just what are these Fatah principles that the moderate was referring to at the founder’s tomb? Abbas’s American boosters don’t talk about them much, but Fatah itself is not so bashful. They are spelled out, for all to see, in the Constitution of Fatah (the name, by the way, means “Conquest” … and would anyone want to take a wild guess against whom?).

Here is what we’re getting for millions in U.S. taxpayer dollars:

… We all must sacrifice ourselves, our effort and time; these are the weapons of honest patriots. Don’t, therefore, dear brother bring your march to a halt! Proceed in your march, armed with the patriots’ resolution, the true believers’ determination, and the fighters’ patience… Let’s not forget for a while that our enemy is strong, and that the fight is fierceful [sic] and long… Consequently, determination, patience, confidentiality, commitment, and abiding by the revolution’s goals and principles keep our march unremittingly steady and makes [sic] our road to victory much shorter. Proceed, then my brother, forward… to the revolution. Long live Palestine, a free Arab state.

FATEH is a national, revolutionary movement and its membership is top confidential. … The Palestinian struggle is part and parcel of the world-wide struggle against Zionism, colonialism and international imperialism. … The Zionist Movement is racial, colonial and aggressive in ideology, goals, organisation and method. … The Israeli existence in Palestine is a Zionist invasion with a colonial expansive base, and it is a natural ally to colonialism and international imperialism. … Liberating Palestine and protecting its holy places is an Arab, religious and human obligation. … Palestinian National Liberation Movement, “FATEH, is an independent national revolutionary movement representing the revolutionary vanguard of the Palestinian people. … The crowds which participate in the revolution and liberation are the proprietors of the Palestinian land.

[Our “Goals” include:] Complete liberation of Palestine, and eradication of Zionist economic, political, military and cultural existence. … Establishing an independent democratic state with complete sovereignty on all Palestinian lands, and Jerusalem is its capital city[.]
(Bold in original, emphasis in bold-italics added.)

Sure, Fatah, like Arafat, makes the occasional feint at peace-making, or, to be more precise, at the “Peace Process,” invoking the biggest snow-job of all time — one that enriched Fatah leaders with piles of cash while “the Zionist economic, political, military and cultural existence” received the bulging body-count of a second Intifada.

But we oughtn’t be fooled: Fatah is still avowedly dedicated to the destruction of its neighbor (or, by Fatah’s lights, its trespasser) by any means necessary, including terrorizing, inducing outside political pressure on, and gradually out-breeding the Israelis. For the purpose, Fatah-controlled school systems and media continue without surcease to inculcate a virulently anti-Semitic martyrdom culture in the young. (See, e.g., this report from Palestinian Media Watch on the stunning curriculum through which Fatah, in the rhetoric of radical Islam, delegitimizes Israel and Jews.)

And, of course, Fatah maintains its own terrorist wing, the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, in addition to maintaining close ties to the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terror organization — both of which are Iran-friendly, Hezbollah-friendly, and formally designated as foreign terrorist organizations by the United States.

These ties put the lie to the myth that Fatah is a moderate political movement that is secular in nature. Yes, Fatah is not a self-identified Muslim fundamentalist movement as Hamas is. But it demonstrates vibrant streaks of Islamic radicalism, as illustrated, for example, by its Brigades named for the al-Aqsa mosque in coveted Jerusalem, and the frequent admonitions on Fatah websites that prying that city from Zionist clutches is a religious obligation.

The terror ties also reveal the illogic of the Bush administration rationale (echoed in a recent National Review Online editorial, here) that Fatah, whatever its flaws, merits our support because its rival, Hamas, is in the pocket of Iran. There are divisions within Fatah, and it may be freely conceded that some of them, historically, have been anti-Iranian. But, on balance, Fatah’s ties to Iran are longstanding, and operational. It is no wonder that the al-Aqsa Brigades, beneficiaries of Iranian largesse, speak glowingly of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his call to wipe Israel off the map.

Fatah may not love Iran, but it will work with Iran. After all, it has a lot more in common with the mullahs than it does with us — beginning, of course, with their mutual goal of eliminating our ally, Israel. The wager that, if Fatah ultimately beats back Hamas, Iran will have suffered a serious set-back is wishful thinking, not strategy. What Iran cares most about is Israel, not Hamas. To terrorize Israel it will work with whoever is left standing.

Finally, even if, with several grains of salt, we were to accept the stop-Iran line of argument as well as the party line that Abbas himself has evolved into a trustworthy peace partner, there is still the 800-pound gorilla in the equation: the Palestinian people.

Such is the delusional U.S. looking-glass on Palestinian society that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, the administration’s staunchest Abbas booster, told columnist Cal Thomas last October, “[Y]ou can look at any opinion poll in the Palestinian territories and 70 percent of the people will say they’re perfectly ready to live side by side with Israel because they just want to live in peace.”

Come again? As it happens, recent polling actually turns out to be more reflective of common sense, which says that when you systematically rear a people on hatred and a cult of death, as Fatah has been so instrumental in doing, they grow up to be hateful and instinctively resort to savagery to settle their disputes.

Thus we find that up to 93 percent of young Palestinian adults (aged 18 to 25) deny Israel’s right to exist — as compared with “only” 75 percent when the total population is factored in. Thus we find, moreover, that when not brutalizing Israelis, Palestinians now brutalize each other. The cold truth is exactly the opposite of the idyllic picture painted by the administration — and given the bile that Abbas’s Fatah spoon-feeds Palestinian children, how on earth could it be otherwise?

Why is the administration supporting Fatah without demanding that it shred its Constitution and unambiguously recognize Israel’s right to exist, as Israel, in perpetuity? Why isn’t President Bush demanding that Abbas not only order the disarming of Hamas in the West Bank (which Abbas did only because Hamas is fighting Fatah, not because Hamas is a terrorist organization), but that he also disarm the al-Aqsa Brigades and Palestinian Islamic Jihad? Because Abbas would be finished the minute he tried any such things. They are not what Palestinians want.

The Palestinians are a backward people, indoctrinated toward brutality. They don’t rate a sovereign state or anyone’s help until they civilize themselves. Sovereignty is a privilege that implies acceptance of civilized norms — that is why we speak of states like Iran and North Korea as “rogues.” Regardless of whether there really are scattered Palestinian moderates, it is a dangerous fantasy to assume the Palestinian people, as a whole, are ready to be anyone’s peace partner.

We are enabling their hatred when we provide support without insisting that the Palestinian people — not just Abbas and Fatah, but the people — convincingly foreswear revolution, terrorism, violence, ethnic-cleansing, and the goal of eliminating Israel. We are a generation or more, at least, from any hope of such developments. In the meantime, as long as we subsidize the hatred, we shall be buying more of it, while giving the Palestinians no incentive to reform.
Andrew C. McCarthy directs the Center for Law & Counterterrorism at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

Kudos To The President – – That Is, President Klaus

Kudos To The President – – That Is, President Klaus
By Austin Hill
Sunday, June 24, 2007
I might embarrass myself with this, but nonetheless I have an admission to make: I came of age, politically speaking, during the presidency of Jimmy Carter.

Oh sure, I have plenty of memories (both good and bad) of Nixon and Ford. But my experience of the ways in which White House policy can impact one’s day to day life first emerged while Carter was in office.

Much of this experience was garnered through observing my own parents. I remember very well their shame over the Iranian hostage crisis; their anxiety over the economic stagflation of the times; and perhaps most vividly, their worries over the threat of future Soviet domination.

Fortunately the world changed, we learned how to grow our free-market economy, and the threat of Soviet domination dissipated. But the earliest years of my childhood and the influence of my parents left me with at least two profound convictions about the world: A) the grip of communism is a tight one; and B) the future of free, virtuous, and prosperous societies is anything but guaranteed.

Because of these convictions, I tend to view the former Soviet Bloc nations with tremendous hope, but also with a tentative, “let’s wait and see” kind of outlook.

And given all this history that has unfolded just within my lifetime, it’s a bit amazing to me that I must now make this admission: my worldview and sensibilities more closely resemble those of a current Eastern European head of state, than those of many of my fellow Americans.

Vaclav Klaus, the President of the Czech Republic, has weighed-in on the notion of “global warming.” Unlike many people here in the United States who unquestionably accept the dogma of it all and participate in the frenzy over the alleged “crisis,” President Klaus has the good sense to ask questions, and to put it all in perspective.

He quite correctly relates the proposed weather “remedies” to a concept that, unfortunately, is quite abstract for many in the contemporary Western world – – the concept of personal and economic liberty. But because he makes this connection, he ends up saying many of the same things that I’ve been thinking – – and that really amazes me.

Writing in The Financial Times journal, President Klaus noted some objective facts about the weather – – the fact that during the past century the average global temperature increased only .6 percent, and the fact that “all of us have noticed that even during our life times temperature changes occur (in both directions).”

President Klaus further noted that many powerful people around the world, including British Prime Minister Tony Blair, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, authorities at the United Nations, and the Academy Award Winning Al Gore, all have the audacity to – – literally – – try and change the weather.

After making these observations, President Klaus states what is really going on here: “The dictates of political correctness are strict,” he writes, “and only one permitted truth, not for the first time in history, is (being) imposed upon us. Everything else is denounced.” He also insists that “rational and freedom-loving people have to respond.”

Now, why is it that here in the wealthiest nation on earth, Al Gore can say things like “the earth has a fever,” and “the debate (on global warming) is over,” and millions of Americans believe it without question – – while a man who heads-up a democracy that is less than twenty years old has enough “Yankee spirit” in him to doubt, question, and even contradict the environmental orthodoxy?

The answer lies in his personal background.

“As someone who lived under communism for most of his life,” Mr. Klaus writes, “I feel obliged to say that I see the biggest threat to freedom, democracy, the market economy and prosperity now in ambitious environmentalism, not in communism. This ideology wants to replace the free and spontaneous evolution of mankind by a sort of central (now global) planning.”

In short, Mr. Klaus knows first-hand what it is like to live under oppression – – and he knows what rhetorical and propagandizing lengths oppressors will go to in order to impose their oppression.

With this in mind, he goes on to make some observations that are for many of us obvious, and yet are elusive for far too many Americans; that small climate changes do not require far-reaching restrictive measures; that the suppression of freedom and democracy should be avoided; and that we shouldn’t “scare ourselves with catastrophic forecasts, or use them to defend and promote irrational interventions in human lives.”

In reality, the threat of “irrational interventions in human lives” will never go away. Still I am comforted to know that at this moment in time, President Klaus is with us as a voice of reason for the Czech Republic – – and for many misguided Americans, as well.

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