Fred Takes the Plunge

Fred Takes the Plunge

Rick Moran
To no one’s surprise, former Tennessee Senator Fred Thompson formally entered the race for the Republican presidential nomination last night.

Thompson made the announcement on the Jay Leno show while releasing a video on his YouTube site that laid out the reasons for his run as well as his qualifications for office.

For both the announcement video and some highlights from his Leno appearance, Hot Air has both.

Choosing the late night talk show format for his announcement is in keeping with what the New York Times calls his “guerilla-style” campaign:

Choosing “The Tonight Show With Jay Leno” to declare “I’m running for president of the United States,” Mr. Thompson said, “I don’t think people are going to say, ‘That guy would make a very good president but he just didn’t get in soon enough.’”

Mr. Thompson’s announcement, which has been expected for months, was released to reporters about an hour before the other Republican candidates took part in a Fox News-sponsored debate in the early primary state of New Hampshire.

But as if to poke fun at his opponents, he ran an ad, titled “Debate,” that appeared directly before the Republican candidates took their places to face live cameras in a much more traditional political ritual. In a dark suit with the backdrop of an American flag, Mr. Thompson said in the advertisement:

“On the next president’s watch, our country will make decisions that will affect our lives and our families far into the future. We can’t allow ourselves to become a weaker, less prosperous and more divided nation.”

Thompson’s campaign themes will be darker and more serious than most of the other candidates. He will spend his time talking about the looming deficits and their threat to our economic future as well as entitlement reform and the challenges of terrorism. 

Appearing folksy and avuncular  in his announcement video, Thompson’s long shot candidacy now needs to take those strengths and turn them into campaign momentum. He is a distant second or third in most national polls and has lost considerable ground in the last month as personnel problems and strategic missteps cost him dearly. 

And he must raise money – lots of it and in a hurry – if he expects to compete with the Romney and Giuliani organizational machines. He has less than 15 weeks before the first caucuse in Iowa so there isn’t a lot of time for a shakedown cruise. He must hit the ground running and sprint all the way to January and beyond if he is to have any chance at all.

No doubt Thompson is a serious, thoughtful man who wants to address the very serious issues that will affect us in the future. Whether that will play with the voters will determine his success or failure.

Hsu Fly

Hsu Fly

Clarice Feldman
Norman Hsu has skipped, following the path of so many Clinton donors with apparent foreign sources of money who are under investigation. The question is why did the judge ever let him out on bail after he’d skipped the first time, fifteen years ago?

Democratic fundraiser Norman Hsu (SHOO) has failed to appear for a bail hearing in Redwood City.
Hsu forfeits the $2 million bail he posted last week. A judge has issued a new warrant for his arrest.
Hsu’s lawyer says he doesn’t know where he is.
Hsu has been a fugitive in California for 15 years during which time he became a top donor to Democratic candidates, including presidential contenders Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama.

I wonder what the hell the San Mateo prosecutors and judge were thinking and why the FBI wasn’t shadowing him. His lawyer said they’d been in contact with him just hours before the hearing but won’t describe the communications they used — i.e. phone or fax or in person.
We are now officially in a Clintonian banana republic again.
He promised to turn in his passport in. His lawyer Brosnahan said an attorney from his office searched Hsu’s New York  apartment on Tuesday and couldn’t find it. The New York Times reports Hsu flew into Oakland on a private plane at 5:30 a.m. and that was the last anyone saw him.
I think the judge  and prosecutors were dopes. I’d never have left a man with this level of flight risk out of prison. The FBI most certainly should have been surveilling him. He will never be heard of again, I’m afraid.
Gateway Pundit notes  some inconsistencies in the statements by Brosnahan:

Hsu’s lawyer Jim Brosnahan is quoted in the media giving two different versions on democratic donor and Fugitive Hsu’s whereabouts.

The Associated Press reported this news on Norman Hsu this evening:

“Mr. Hsu is not here and we do not know where Mr. Hsu is,” Brosnahan said outside court. Brosnahan said that “there was some contact” with Hsu a few hours before the scheduled 9 a.m. court appearance, but he declined to say how and who talked to Hsu…

Brosnahan (Hsu’s lawyer) said he didn’t know if Hsu returned to his Manhattan condominium or stayed in California after his five-hour jail stint Friday when Hsu turned himself in. He was released from jail after posting $2 million bail, which a judge refused then to reduce to $1 million.

But the SFGate reported this from Hsu’s lawyer Brosnahan:

A judge ordered him to surrender his passport, and Brosnahan said one of his legal assistants went to Hsu’s New York condominium on Monday to retrieve it. Hsu was in California at the time, Brosnahan said. The assistant followed Hsu’s directions, but couldn’t locate the passport after 90 minutes of searching, the attorney said.

Brosnahan said someone had been in contact with Hsu a few hours before the 9 a.m. hearing, but he declined to comment on who it was and whether that contact was by phone or other means.

So, in one interview Brosnahan says he does not know if Hsu went back to NYC or stayed in California and in the next interview he says that Hsu was in California on Monday.

Also, don’t you think if someone from the defense team spoke with Hsu a few hours before the court appearance this morning that they would have asked Hsu where he was?

It sounds like Brosnahan knows more on Hsu than he is telling.

Whether or not this indicates he was dissembling or that there is some ambiguity in his remarks — i.e., Hsu was not in NY on Monday but may have been there on another day between the two hearings– I don’t think the judge, the prosecutors or the FBI inspire confidence in their good sense .

Iran, Islamic terrorists, and stuff

‘Muslim Opinion’ Be Damned: Hatred of America is Irrational and Undeserved

‘Muslim Opinion’ Be Damned: Hatred of America is Irrational and Undeserved
By Alex Epstein, 9/3/2007 1:09:51 PM To listen to most of our foreign-policy commentators, the biggest problem facing America today, six years after 9/11, is the fact that many Muslims are mad at us. “Whatever one’s views on the [Iraq] war,” writes a New York Times columnist, “thoughtful Americans need to consider … the bitter anger that it has provoked among Muslims around the world.” In response to the Abu Ghraib scandal several years ago, Ted Kennedy lamented, “We have become the most hated nation in the world, as a result of this disastrous policy in the prisons.” Muslim anger over America’s support of Israel, we are told, is a major cause of anti-American terrorism.

We face, these commentators say, a crisis of “Muslim opinion.” We must, they say, win the “hearts and minds” of angry Muslims by heaping public affection on Islam, by shutting down Guantanamo, by being more “evenhanded” between free Israel and the terrorist Palestinian Authority — and certainly by avoiding any new military action in the Muslim world. If we fail to win over “Muslim opinion,” we are told, we will drive even more to become terrorists.

All of this evades one blatant truth: the hatred being heaped on America is irrational and undeserved. Consider the issue of treatment of POWs. Many Muslims are up in arms about the treatment of prisoners of war in Iraq and at Guantanamo — many of whom were captured on battlefields trying to kill Americans. Yet these same Muslims are silent about the summary convictions and torture — real torture, with electric drills and vats of acid — that are official policy and daily practice throughout the Middle East.

Or consider “Muslim opinion” over the U.S. handling of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, in which the United States is accused of not being “hard enough” on Israel — a free nation with laws that protect all citizens, Jew and Arab alike — for Israel’s supposed mistreatment of Palestinians. Yet “Muslim opinion” reveres the Palestinian Authority, a brutal dictatorship that deprives Palestinians of every basic freedom, keeps them in unspeakable poverty, and routinely tortures and executes peaceful dissenters.

So-called Muslim opinion is not the unanimous and just consensus that its seekers pretend. It is the irrational and unjust opinion of the world’s worst Muslims: Islamists and their legions of “moderate” supporters and sympathizers. These people oppose us not because of any legitimate grievances against America, but because they are steeped in a fundamentalist interpretation of their religion — one that views America’s freedom, prosperity, and pursuit of worldly pleasures as the height of depravity. They do not seek respect for the rights of the individual (Muslim or non-Muslim), they seek a world in which the rights of all are sacrificed to the dictates of Islam.

The proper response to Islamists and their supporters is to identify them as our ideological and political enemies — and dispense justice accordingly. In the case of our militant enemies, we must kill or demoralize them — especially those regimes that support terrorism and fuel the Islamist movement; as for the rest, we must politically ignore them and intellectually discredit them, while proudly arguing for the superiority of Americanism. Such a policy would make us safe, expose Islamic anti-Americanism as irrational and immoral, and embolden the better Muslims to support our ideals and emulate our ways.

President Bush, like most politicians and intellectuals, has taken the opposite approach to “Muslim opinion”: appeasement. Instead of identifying anti-American Muslims as ideological enemies to be discredited, he has appealed to their sensibilities and met their demands — e.g., sacrificing American soldiers to save Iraqi civilians and mosques. Instead of seeking to crush the Islamists by defeating the causes they fight for — such as Islamic world domination and the destruction of Israel — he has appeased those causes, declaring Islam a “great religion” and rewarding the Palestinian terrorist Jihad with a promised Palestinian state. Instead of destroying terrorist regimes that wage war against the West — including, most notably, Iran — he has sought their “cooperation” and even cast some as coalition partners.

Such measures have rewarded our enemy for waging physical and spiritual war against us. Condemn America, they have learned, and American leaders will praise your ideals and meet your demands. Attack America via terrorist proxy, terrorist states and movements have been taught, and America will neither blame you nor destroy you, but redouble its efforts to buy your love.

Every attempt to appease “Muslim opinion” preserves, promotes, and emboldens our enemies. Every concession to angry Muslim mobs gives hope to the Islamist cause. Every day we allow terrorist regimes to exist gives their minions time to execute the next Sept. 11. America needs honest leadership with the courage to identify and defeat our enemies — “Muslim opinion” be damned.

Copyright © 2007 Ayn Rand® Institute. All rights reserved.

HawaiiReporter.com reports the real news, and prints all editorials submitted, even if they do not represent the viewpoint of the editors, as long as they are written clearly. Send editorials to mailto:Malia@HawaiiReporter.com

White-collar jihadists

  White-collar jihadists

Erik Rush

Erik Rush
September 5, 2007


Picture this: A dramatic rise in attacks on minorities by white supremacist skinhead and similar groups occurs. Members of the White Aryan Resistance, the Aryan Brethren Church and others come out of the woodwork and begin to appear on television news venues, articulate and very dapper as they play the role of apologists for the former, but always with a hint of validation and justification as they disavow the escalating violence. For some unfathomable reason, they are softballed by the media, legitimizing them further with each passing day.

Would this scenario disturb you?

In this space last week, I excoriated The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) as a terrorist-connected, criminal organization hiding behind an innocuous, corporate “civil rights advocacy for Muslims” façade. I still hold to this; the extraordinary (and very sobering) phenomenon was what followed the column’s publication: I was inundated with information from readers, colleagues and bloggers who have been following CAIR and similar organizations over the past few years. If I painted a frightening picture last week — as they say, “brother, you aint seen nothing yet.”

Although CAIR is “America’s largest Islamic civil liberties group” (from www.cair.org), there are literally dozens of equally active “major” (and perhaps hundreds of “minor”) groups (Let’s call them “cells”) operating throughout the United States. Aided by people whom they are in a position to reward (financially or through political support) and deluded diversity worshippers, they are garnering significant political power through attrition and public apathy.

    “On September 8, 2007, Ahmad Al-Akhras, close advisor to Columbus Mayor Michael Coleman and president of the Islamic Foundation of Central Ohio (IFCO), will host Siraj Wahhaj as guest speaker at an IFCO fundraising dinner here in Columbus. Mayor Coleman has appointed Al-Akhras to numerous Columbus city government boards, commissions and committees.”

    - Central Ohioans Against Terrorism, August 30, 2007

By way of general affiliation, Mayor Michael Coleman supported the Kerry-Edwards ticket in 2004. Siraj Wahaj (born Jeffrey Kearse) was named an unindicted co-conspirator in the 1993 World Trade Center bombings and is Imam of Al Taqwa mosque in New York.

Ahmad Al-Akhras, the Mayor’s “close advisor,” is a CAIR Board Member.

“An Open Letter from CAIR to the ADL” (Jewish Anti-Defamation League), released on August 30, 2007, chastised the ADL for “smearing the good name of an organization [CAIR] with a proud history of standing for justice and mutual understanding.” It’s not that I believe CAIR thinks the ADL’s leaders were born yesterday; this is clearly a public relations attack, a sympathy play for the American public’s consumption. For the ADL’s part, their “offense” was simply calling CAIR what they are.

The Iranian-American Council (AIC) is an organization that ostensibly “provides for a sustainable dialogue and a more comprehensive understanding of US-Iran relations.” [From AIC Mission Statement] Its American supporters are all left-leaners, and its rhetoric, while never acerbic, suggests that the United States’ involvement in Iranian politics is essentially to blame for the fact that “since the Iranian revolution of 1979, Iranian society has existed in an abnormal state.” (From “The Discourse of Democracy to the Discourse of Normalization in the Islamic Republic of Iran,” Hooshang Amirahmadi, Professor of Planning and International Development and the Director of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at Rutgers University, and President of the American Iranian Council, May 29, 2007).

These cells are supported by brainwashed and misguidedly guilt-ridden Americans such as the “Reverend” Jim Sutter, a far Left agitator with bogus credentials and a nefarious history. He attacks those who scrutinize these pro-Muslim cells with outlandish claims of racism which the targets are compelled to answer, lest the public take their silence as an implicit admission of guilt.

“Jihad Watch” (www.jihadwatch.org), published by prominent political author Robert Spencer, is one of the most well-known purveyors of reliable information addressing behind-the-scenes machinations of stateside-based Islamic organizations. Groups such as CAIR and IAC have now taken up the practice of pressuring corporations and universities to block Jihad Watch as a “hate-speech” site on their servers. We know this, of course because avid readers subsequently write to JW and alert them. Fallen to pressure and PC cowardice so far are dozens of major corporations.

This type of blackmail has been used by far Left organizations since the ‘Nineties (in fact, quite a few universities block certain news magazines without any coercion whatsoever, a hypocrisy even in the face of their convoluted perception of First Amendment rights), but it is only recently that these Islamic cells have capitalized on this tactic.

    “CAIR has so perfected the art of spin that I don’t think even you would catch the con job until it was over. At least, I’d bet that the innocents at Paramount didn’t have a clue that the screening they arranged for the movie ‘A Mighty Heart’ [starring Angelina Jolie] was a ruse to make CAIR, the terror-supporting organization, look good.”

    - From “A Mighty Spin: Paramount in Bed with CAIR,” Arlene Peck, Israel Hasbara Committee (IHC), July 31, 2007:

Last week I called for the disbanding of CAIR and the jailing of its leaders. Now, I’m calling for something far more extreme.

I’m sure there were millions of pre-World War II Germans who would have been mortified had they known what Hitler had in mind vis-à-vis slave laborers and concentration camps. Indeed, some might have changed history with their actions. But many who did hear what Hitler intended didn’t believe it. When the proverbial excrement hit the fan, all they could do was obey and cooperate under pain of death.

    “Islam is the fastest growing religion in America and has now become the second largest religion in the United States.”

    - www.muslimsinamerica.org

Gee — that must mean a lot of converts… or does it?

In America, there are probably between 1.8 and 3 million practicing Muslims in America, based on a cross-section of statistics. Most of these have come from the Middle East and Pakistan over the last 20 years. I am quite certain that many Americans count these among their friends, perceive no threat from them, and would find any comparison between them and the aforementioned “good Germans” preposterous. Their neighbors and colleagues at work supporting terrorists, let alone picking up a gun at some unforeseen juncture? Pshaw!

The Koran, however, expressly sanctions this type of duplicity during the subjugation of a dominant culture; this especially gives me pause since Muslims don’t believe in microwave wars. They have always thought of wars in terms of centuries or even millennia, as opposed to neat little month or two mop-ups.

Is watching one’s neighbor with a jaded eye paranoia, or a violation of his privacy or civil rights? My grandfather, a second-generation German, worked for the telephone company during World War II (he had served in the Cavalry during WWI, so he wasn’t at the top of the draft list). He tapped his German-descended neighbors telephone lines at the behest of his superiors who were cooperating with the Federal government. Why? Because they knew that there were German-descended Americans who were also Nazi sympathists — and they had no idea how far they would go in helping to manifest Hitler’s dream.

Is it any more paranoid, a violation of privacy or civil rights than community watch groups that keep tabs on serial child rapists? The purulent scourge of Political Correctness leads many Americans to say “yes,” which illustrates how weak and sick some of us have become in our thinking — and quite scrupulously validates my point. In 2004 in Russia, terrorists seized a school and blew themselves up along with 300 children.

Apparently it isn’t enough for the American public that CAIR’s predecessor, the American Muslim Council (AMC) was unmasked as a Wahhabist terrorist-supporting front, nor that radical Muslims have infiltrated our military and intelligence community, ostensibly secure organizations. What’s the challenge in a well-trained cell sequestering itself in, say, some suburban neighborhood and carrying out an attack akin to the one in Russia?

Only time will tell whether Americans have the capacity to “realize (the threat) and mobilize” as we have in the past, or whether we’ve become a society of blind, insane morons who refuse to believe the guy on the other end of the gun actually has the capacity to pull the trigger.

I’ve admitted previously to being kind of a twisted guy; I keep having this visual of television’s Mr. Rogers beckoning “Won’tcha be my neighbor?” — then the AK-47 comes out from behind that ridiculously dated, grandfatherly sweater.

Fade to black…



Erik Rush is a contributor of social commentary to numerous print and online publications. Born in New York City in 1961, from 1975 to 1986, he worked as a studio, club, and stage musician and in biomedical research. In 1986, Erik relocated to the Southwestern U.S.

In 2002, his first novel, “The Angels Fell” was released. His nonfiction book “It’s the Devil, Stupid! (Our Real Enemy and Why We Don’t Talk About Him)” was published in June 2006.

Erik is also a Staff Writer for the New Media Alliance, Inc., and is acting Associate Editor and Publisher of TheRealityCheck.org. In addition to work and his family, he also participates in the Praise band and martial arts at his church and enjoys writing music, remodeling, and refinishing guitars. His entertaining and informative (if bizarre) website can be found at www.erikrush.com.

© Copyright 2007 by Erik Rush
http://www.renewamerica.us/columns/rush/070905

The nasty Saudi face

The nasty Saudi face

Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury

Saudia, the official flag career of Saudi Arabia has officially declared in its web sites that any passenger flying with it to Saudi Arabia are now allowed to carry ‘due to religious reason’. These include alcoholic beverages, pork and pork products, prohibited drugs and narcotics, firearms, explosives, edged weapons and pornographic materials.Items and articles belonging to religions other than Islam are also prohibited. These may include Bibles, crucifixes, statues, carvings, items with religious symbols such as the Star of David, and others.As soon as I came to know such heinous announcement, I called the local office of Saudia in Dhaka to know for sure if such restrictions on carrying holy Bible and other religious items were really forbidden. The reply was shocking and it was ‘yes’.According to another information, signs in Saudi airports warn Muslim travelers that the airport’s mutawwa’in, or religious police, confiscate Korans, other Islamic literature, and Muslim objects of non-Saudi origin. While discriminating specifically against Shiites and Ahmadis, this policy manifests a wider insistence on Wahhabi supremacism. More broadly, the Saudi leadership runs a country that the American government has condemned repeatedly as having “no religious freedom” and being among the most religiously repressive in the world.When an employee at the Saudi Consulate in New York was contacted by a newspaper, it was told that anyone bringing a Bible into the country or wearing a crucifix or Star of David around their neck would run into trouble with Saudi authorities. “You are not allowed to bring that stuff into the kingdom,” the consular official said. “If you do, they will take it away,” she warned, adding, “If it is really important to you, then you can try to bring it and just see what happens, but I don’t recommend that you do so.” It may be mentioned here that over the summer, the Saudi government-run Supreme Commission for Tourism announced a number of steps, such as issuing group visas to foreigners through tour operators and granting longer entry visas, in the hopes of boosting the number of foreign tourists to 1.5 million annually by 2020. I really fail to understand, who are those senseless and shameless people, who would love to visit this ridiculous land of wahabis knowing their extreme nasty attitude of religious intolerance.Before I comment on the latest move of Saudi Arabian Airlines, let me try to look into this on Islamic perspectives. If I am not mistaking, one of the pillars of remaining Muslim is to believe in all previous prophets and previous holy books. If someone would violate this Koranic instruction, he or she will no more remain a Muslim. I know, Wahabism is not Islam. It is a kind of peculiar theory of the Arab monarchs in order to protect their crowns for centuries and let them remain at the helm of Muslim world. But, the latest decision of Saudia is a clear violation of Koran. So, it is no need to even argue that the Arab monarchs now automatically loses their rights to be termed as Muslims. They are Wahabis, not Muslims. And, in this case, my question to millions of Muslims around the world. Should we let those Wahabis remain the custodian of the key of Holy Kabaah? Unfortunately, in today’s world, true spirit of Islam is being hijacked by many evil forces under many names. Wahabis, Hamas, Hezbollah, Ahmedinejad etc., etc. The entire Muslim world has become a kind of captive in the whims and cruelties of these bad elements. If the Muslims are truly willing to fight evils, they must raise voice against Wahabis, Hamas, Hezbollah, Ahmedinejad and others, which are continuing to spread poison of religious hatred in the world. Those who tries to be non-respectful to Bible, Torah and other holy books and messengers of Allah should remember one very specific verse of Koran. It says, do not differentiate my prophets. If you do so, you will become atheist. So, being a Muslim, I can say with all my confessions that Wahabism is a Arab format of atheism. It is in fact even worst. Let us look into the Arab societies. One man is marrying several women and always leaving them unattended regularly and depriving them of their right accorded by Allah through the verses of Koran [Sura Nisa and others]. I know of facts of many Arab men having 10-12 wives. Now, even in Islam, it is not allowed to have more than four wives. How these Arabs marry more than four? This is surely not Islam!And now going back to the titled topic, we heard of many injustice in Saudia for years. Last year, we published series news items on the sordid story of an Indian Muslim female, who worked for Saudi Arabian Airlines and finally was sexually harassed by her Arab colleagues. She knocked the doors of Saudi king. But, no result, as if the monarchism in Saudi Arabia are also ready to defend such notoriety of the men in their society. In fact, Saudi men are ‘skilled’ in sexual harassment. They consider women as a kind of amusement element – not human being. In ancient Arab time, even when fathers died, sons were becoming the owners of their own mothers. Mothers were then giving birth to child from their own sons. Just imagine the degree of sickness in that society. Can we really expect anything morale and good from those sick people? Nah!

Posted on 06 Sep 2007 by Root

Ahmadinejad: Iran aims at “global government”

Ahmadinejad: Iran aims at “global government”

“Clashes today are only a pretext and they confront us because the revolutionary Iran aims a global government and a genuine Islamic culture so as to gain a loftier position worldwide.”

He said it.

“Ahmadinejad: Education best scene of women’s social presence,” from IRNA (thanks to Morgaan Sinclair):

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said here Thursday that education is the best field for women’s social presence.”The best and most beautiful scene for women’s social presence is education and training. Such a presence can not be compared with anything else and that’s what mankind is in dire need of it,” said president Ahmadinejad in an address to the sixth annual meeting of the principals of women seminaries.

[...]

“Our struggle with the superpowers is over nuclear problem and some superficial issues. Our main battle with them is due to our not considering any right of sovereignty for them and deeming them as the usurpers, even if the powers distribute money and wealth among the public.”

He went on to say, “They know quite well that the Islamic Revolution wants to prepare the ground for materialization of the promised `big event’ (reappearance of the Imam of Age); that’s why they try to take precedence in campaign against us. We are against rule of the non-righteous individuals. Clashes today are only a pretext and they confront us because the revolutionary Iran aims a global government and a genuine Islamic culture so as to gain a loftier position worldwide. As for the nuclear issue, (I should say) thanks to them the issue served as a medium for Iran’s moving to a yet higher position,” announced Ahmadinejad.

German authorities watch increasing conversions to Islam with concern

German authorities watch increasing conversions

 to Islam with concern

05 September 2007

Berlin (dpa) – The German authorities are watching the rising tide of conversion to Islam with some concern, the daily Berliner Zeitung reported Thursday.

The newspaper cited figures compiled by a Muslim group that showed that 4,000 Germans had converted last year, compared with just 1,000 in 2005.

It was common knowledge that the German authorities were monitoring converts to Islam closely, it said.

Quoting Interior Ministry officials, the newspaper said there had been a rise internationally in the number of converts involved in Islamist terrorist acts.

Among them are “shoe bomber” Richard Reid, a Briton who tried to blow up an American Airlines flight in December 2001, and Muriel Degauque, a Belgian suicide bomber who blew herself up in Iraq in November 2005.

document.write(”);

Guido Steinberg, who researches Islamic issues, said extremists were targeting new converts, and terrorist expert Rolf Tophoven said converts tended to be fanatical.

According to Salim Abdullah, who runs the Islam Archive, there are currently 3.3 million Muslims in Germany, 18,000 of them of German origin.

The Interior Ministry estimates the number of converts at 15,000 but notes that woman converts tend to bring up their children as Muslims and estimates that 40,000 native Germans are living according to Muslim custom.

Abdullah attributed the increase in conversions to rising Islamophobia. “Whenever Islam falls under suspicion, many people start to feel solidarity with the religion,” he told the Berliner Zeitung.

This had been visible immediately after the September 11 attacks in 2001.

Abdullah noted that more women than men were converts, in a ratio of 60 to 40, but added that conviction rather than marriage to a Muslim was usually the reason.

dpa

Subject: German news

Mexico: the Next Colombia?

Mexico: the Next Colombia?

By Andrew Walden
FrontPageMagazine.com | 9/6/2007

Will Mexico go the way of Colombia? Drug gangs are terrorizing Mexican cities. Severed heads show up on the doorstep of police stations and newspapers—often with warnings from drug gangs targeting officials by name. Over 370 young women have been murdered in Ciudad Juarez. Eleven journalists have been murdered in the last year making Mexico the second most dangerous country for journalists—after Iraq.

Hoping to stem the tide, Mexico’s new President Felipe Calderon has ordered federal takeover of corrupt local police departments in cities including Tijuana and Monterrey and several States. In Tijuana, Tabasco, and Oaxaca local and state police were disarmed and their weapons are being checked against evidence from recent murders by ballistics experts. Authorities have announced the arrest of over 1,000 drug suspects and the confiscation of tons of drugs destined mostly for the US market. In late June Calderon’s administration sacked over 300 federal police commanders in an effort to root out corruption.

Calderon and the Bush administration in early August were reported close to signing a new $7 billion cooperation pact with the US which officials went out of their way to claim is not modeled on “Plan Colombia”—the ongoing somewhat successful decade-long effort to beat back Colombia’s notorious narco-guerrillas and the drug trade they protect. According to the Washington Post, US aid would include: “telephone tapping equipment, radar to track traffickers’ shipments by air, aircraft to transport Mexican anti-drug teams and assorted training….”

The refusal of US authorities to close off illegal crossings of the US-Mexican border and more thoroughly inspect legal crossings has allowed the creation of a millions-strong class of illegal persons in the US. At the same time the open border has provided an incentive for Mexican drug gangs to open up shop south of the border in order to flood the US with narcotics. Drug use is now on the increase in Mexico as well.

With Mexican drug gangs corrupting police and terrorizing Mexicans, they also provide a possible conduit for terrorist infiltration of the US. Mexico has long been a way station for “OTMs”—Other Than Mexicans—intending to sneak into the US. The human smuggling business is intrinsically linked to the drug smuggling business. With narco-terrorists borrowing a page from al-Qaeda’s playbook—videotaping executions and beheading their victims, there is little reason to think they would hesitate at assisting Islamist terrorists—if the price was right.

Drugs can be a very powerful weapon against a nation. British opium pushers in the 19th century are partly responsible for the collapse of the powerful Chinese empire. The result was decades of chaos and war eventually followed by the genocidal communist dictatorship of Mao Zedong.

In a 20th century parallel to the Opium Wars, Cuba is partly responsible for the formation of the Colombian narco-guerilla gangs and their choice to finance themselves though drug trafficking. In addition to shipping through Cuba to Florida, the Colombians in turn hired Mexican gangs to transship cocaine into Texas and California. Eventually the Mexican gangs began producing, shipping, and selling their own drugs.

Drug violence in Mexico creates one more reason for Mexicans to head north–and about 10% of all Mexicans are now estimated to be illegally in the US with millions more here legally. Drug use already severely marks the entry-level US labor pool which in turn creates greater demand for illegal alien workers. The porous border and the human smuggling expertise created by the crossing of million of illegal aliens create ripe conditions for the drug trade. The drug gangs in turn corrupt Mexican society and create more reasons for Mexicans to leave—and they cycle continues.

A Gallup poll released July 2 measures a hypothetical Clinton vs Giuliani 2008 Presidential race. The poll shows 78% support for Hillary in 2008 among Hispanics without a college education. Among college educated Hispanics, 50% would vote for Rudy. Legal immigration quotas are heavily weighted towards educated persons. This sharp dichotomy between educated and uneducated Hispanic voters would explain why so-called immigration reform efforts are so heavily weighted towards making illegals more comfortable and then granting them amnesty rather than increasing the number of legal immigrants.

Manipulating policy to bring in Democrat voters is not the only political angle in the human smuggling/drug smuggling nexus. Heavy drug use on American campuses makes students more amenable to the paranoid ministrations and anti-American conspiracy theories of leftist professors. The drug trade finances guerilla movements, aids Fidel Castro’s communist regime and destabilizes Latin American countries.

With the effects of the open border now being felt strongly on both sides, Bush and Calderon were expected to announce their plan at a two-day North American summit with conservative Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper in Quebec August 20 and 21. It didn’t happen, but at least one Democrat jumped the gun and began griping. According to the LA Times, “An aide to Sen. Patrick J. Leahy (D-VT), chairman of the subcommittee controlling foreign aid expenditures, complained that his office had heard nothing from the White House about a deal.

“’Sen. Leahy believes that in Iraq and beyond, this administration is accustomed to writing checks for hundreds of millions of dollars and expecting Congress to cash them without consultation or question,’ aide David Carle said.”

Other Democrats, notably Rep Henry Cuellar—whose Texas district is hard-hit by the illicit cross-border traffic–back the plan. Cuellar tells the Times, “We finally have a Mexican president who’s willing to take brave steps. But if we lose that opportunity, the window will close.”

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