The Perils of the Road

I’m off to visit relatives again and will be gone overnight. Those pesky relatives! And they live so far away…

However, with luck I’ll be able to swing by Mare Imbrium on the way home and take a few photos from the rim of Eratosthenes. And maybe even get a shot of Copernicus.

In the meantime, Dymphna will be in charge. She isn’t as attentive about moderating comments as I am, so be patient — your comment will appear eventually (assuming you mind your p’s and q’s).

The news feed will resume tomorrow evening.

Gates of Vienna News Feed 8/24/2013

The United States and Britain are reportedly preparing to go to war with Syria, with the casus belli being the Assad regime’s alleged gas attack on civilians. The USA, Israel, and the EU assert that the Syrian government is responsible for the attack, while Russia and Syria insist that the rebels were behind it. Iran has condemned the action without assigning blame. The Syrian government says that its soldiers discovered chemical weapons in one of the rebels’ tunnels.

The medical charity Médecins sans Frontières says it has treated thousands of victims for symptoms of neurotoxin poisoning. Independent groups come down on both sides of the issue, and some even maintain that the observed symptoms do not correspond with the effects of weapons-grade chemical agents.

In wine-related news, Italy is expecting a bumper crop of grapes this year, with white varietals in particular predicted to reach high production levels. The new European Commissioner for Consumer Protection — who is Croatian — says that the EU will increase its efforts to distinguish Croatian prosek, a sweet red dessert wine, from Italian prosecco, a dry sparkling white, so that wine consumers understand the difference and make their bibulous purchases accordingly.

To see the headlines and the articles, click “Continue reading” below.

Thanks to C. Cantoni, Fjordman, Gaia, Insubria, JD, Jerry Gordon, KP, MC, McR, Papa Whiskey, Vlad Tepes, and all the other tipsters who sent these in.

Notice to tipsters: Please don’t submit extensive excerpts from articles that have been posted behind a subscription firewall, or are otherwise under copyright protection.

Caveat: Articles in the news feed are posted “as is”. Gates of Vienna cannot vouch for the authenticity or accuracy of the contents of any individual item posted here. We check each entry to make sure it is relatively interesting, not patently offensive, and at least superficially plausible. The link to the original is included with each item’s title. Further research and verification are left to the reader.

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Hold Up Four Fingers for Sharia!

A demonstration in support of the Muslim Brotherhood and deposed President Mohamed Morsi was held on Parliament Hill in Ottawa today. The video below was taken by a reader and sent to Vlad Tepes, who edited it, annotated it, and uploaded it:

So what’s the deal with the four fingers? Pakistaniyan notes that they’ve become a symbol for supporters of Mr. Morsi’s regime since the military crackdown earlier this month:

Have you seen the yellow and black colored four fingered hand sign on social media recently and want to know that what is it? Why people are posting about it on internet? Raaba/Rabia or R4BIA is four in arabic, and this hand sign by raising 4 fingers has become the symbol of the massacre in Egypt as well as Rabaa al-Adawiya Square where the anti-coup protests take place.

And Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has used the same symbol in solidarity with Muslim Brotherhood supporters:

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An Extremist Group of One

Shortly after the October Revolution, the Bolsheviks began to purge their political enemies. The Czarists, the aristocracy, and businessmen were obviously their first targets, but it wasn’t long before they turned on their former allies on the Left. First came the Socialist Revolutionaries and the Anarchists, then the Mensheviks, and then factions within the Bolsheviks themselves that threatened the dominance of Lenin, Stalin, and Trotsky.

To purge rivals whose ideology differed only marginally from one’s own required creative adaptations of political terminology to justify their liquidation. The Party hunted down “counter-revolutionaries”, “deviationists”, “right extremists”, “reactionaries”, and many other arcane neologisms coined especially for the occasion. In the 1930s, after the ascendancy of Fascism in Italy at the expense of the Communists, the term “fascist” came into vogue as the preferred designation for an enemy of the state. From then on the Bolsheviks pursued and destroyed “fascists” wherever they found them, and their ideological heirs are still doing the same thing today.

A similar process seems to be underway in the National Security State that is now administered by the Obama administration, with the preferred targets designated as “extremists” and “hate groups”. The pursuit of such “extremists” did not begin with the current administration — Homeland Security was, after all, the brainchild of the Bush administration — but under Janet Napolitano and Eric Holder it has reached a baroque elaboration that the Bush functionaries could only dream of.

In order to justify investigating and prosecuting Muslim terrorists — who really would kill people and blow up infrastructure if they were not obstructed — the feds are obliged to pursue at least as many infidels, in order to demonstrate that no “profiling” is taking place. With the hard Left currently holding the levers of power, this imperative guarantees an open season against “right-wing extremists” — which means virtually anyone who fails to support the full Socialist agenda.

After five years of diligent effort on the part of the nomenklatura who run the federal bureaucracy, we have reached the point that a patriotic American waving the flag on the Fourth of July is demonstrably an “extremist” — and maybe even a potential “terrorist”.

Last month we reported on the question put by ICLA to the official representative of the United States at the OSCE meeting in Vienna about the federal government’s use of the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) as a resource to determine which American organizations are “hate groups”. Readers may remember that the representative dodged the question. He affirmed only that the SPLC has the right of free expression under the First Amendment, and never addressed the issue of its use by the government to separate the ideological sheep from the extremist goats.

Confirmation of the current drift of official policy — in which no left-winger is ever an “extremist”, while every right-winger is at least suspected of being one — was reported on Thursday by Judicial Watch. Below are excerpts from their press release about Air Force training materials they uncovered via the Freedom of Information Act:

Judicial Watch: Defense Department Teaching Documents Suggest Mainstream Conservative Views “Extremist”

Defense Document Suggests Colonists Fighting British Rule were members of “extremist movement”

(Washington, DC) — Judicial Watch announced today that it has obtained educational materials from the Department of Defense (DOD) depicting conservative organizations as “hate groups” and advising students to be aware that “many extremists will talk of individual liberties, states’ rights, and how to make the world a better place.” The documents repeatedly cite the leftwing Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) as a resource for identifying “hate groups.”

Judicial Watch obtained the documents in a response to a Freedom of Information Act request (FOIA) filed on April 8, 2013. The FOIA requested “Any and all records concerning, regarding, or related to the preparation and presentation of training materials on hate groups or hate crimes distributed or used by the Air Force.” Included in the 133 pages of lesson plans and PowerPoint slides provided by the Air Force is a January 2013 Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute “student guide” entitled “Extremism.” The document says that it is “for training purposes only” and “do not use on the job.” Highlights include:

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The Imam Who Defected

Ahmed Akkari is one of the notorious Danish imams who carried the Mohammed cartoons to the Middle East back in 2006. His actions helped inflame tensions that led to riots and resulted in the burning of two Danish embassies (and a Norwegian one, if I recall correctly).

After spending some years in Greenland, Mr. Akkari recently caused a sensation in Denmark by publicly apologizing for his actions and admitting that they were wrong. The Danish media have been buzzing ever since with speculation about whether the imam was sincere, or whether his repentance is being faked for tactical reasons.

Last night Ahmed Akkari was a guest of the Free Press Society in Copenhagen, and spoke at length about his “conversion”. The following article about the occasion was originally published at Dispatch International in a slightly different form:

The imam who defected: Extremists run all Danish mosques

by Ingrid Carlqvist

Finally he is there — on the podium of The Free Press Society. It is half past seven PM, Thursday, August 22, 2013, as the former Islamist imam and deadly enemy of the Free Press Society, Ahmed Akkari, faces his fiercest critics.

A tiny man with more than a hundred deaths and the burning of two Danish embassies on his conscience.

“Thank you for inviting me. I don’t know if I deserve all this, but perhaps my journey through life may be of use to you,” says Ahmed Akkari as he timidly surveys the packed hall in the heart of Copenhagen.

Since ex-Islamist Ahmed Akkari came out of the closet three weeks ago, he has been the man of the hour. On television shows, in newspaper articles and on radio, he has tried to explain what has happened to him. He went from being a hardened and fierce Islamist to a kindly and thoughtful person, filled with love and gratitude for Denmark.

The metamorphosis is difficult to explain and hard to believe. Is his conversion sincere or he is he applying taqiyya — the right of Muslims to lie and deceive in the service of Islam?

In 1985, when Akkari was six, his parents fled to Denmark from war-torn Lebanon. They chose Denmark because it was a safe country without too many immigrants — thinking that they would find a peaceful life here.

Ahmed Akkari attended public school as the only immigrant in his class. He had every chance in the world to adapt and become a normal Dane. But in his teens he was drawn to religious circles and before realizing what was happening, he had become poisoned by extremism.

He embarked on an education as an imam and suddenly he detested democracy and free speech. Allah and life after death became his only concerns. When the daily Jyllands-Posten published the famous Mohammed cartoons in September 2005, he was instrumental in condemning Denmark. Together with other imams he traveled to The Middle East in order to stir up a glowing hatred against the small northern country that had had the audacity to offend the prophet. The result: riots leading to the death of more than a hundred people, two Danish embassies burnt to the ground and a boycott of Danish products.

Vengefully, Akkari and his cohorts tried to force then Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen to apologize for Jyllands-Posten’s cartoons. But the Prime Minister stood firm and explained that Denmark enjoys freedom of the press and that he neither could nor would apologize. That made no impression on Denmark’s boisterous cultural elite that just could not understand why one had to offend the country’s and the world’s Muslims this way.

But now Ahmed Akkari understands. He has undergone a metamorphosis. How did that happen? And can we trust him?

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Gates of Vienna News Feed 8/23/2013

Major Nidal Hasan, the Killer Shrink of Fort Hood, was convicted today by a military jury on all 13 counts of premeditated murder and 32 counts of attempted premeditated murder. The sentencing phase of the trial will begin on Monday.

In other news, a study in Norway has discovered that people who are afflicted by neurosis have smaller brains with fewer neural connections.

To see the headlines and the articles, click “Continue reading” below.

Thanks to C. Cantoni, Caroline Glick, Fjordman, Frontinus, Insubria, JD, Jerry Gordon, KP, LS, and all the other tipsters who sent these in.

Notice to tipsters: Please don’t submit extensive excerpts from articles that have been posted behind a subscription firewall, or are otherwise under copyright protection.

Caveat: Articles in the news feed are posted “as is”. Gates of Vienna cannot vouch for the authenticity or accuracy of the contents of any individual item posted here. We check each entry to make sure it is relatively interesting, not patently offensive, and at least superficially plausible. The link to the original is included with each item’s title. Further research and verification are left to the reader.

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Boots on the Ground in Syria

It appears that American military forces are now in Syria, and have been there since before the recent alleged chemical attack by the regime of Bashar al-Assad. As happened in Libya two years ago, foreign troops — in this case, Americans, Israelis, and Jordanians — have been secretly inserted into the country to train the rebels and assist them in overthrowing the regime.

This is the scenario put forward by Le Figaro, in an article translated from the French:

Syria: Anti-Assad operation has begun

By Isabelle Lasserre

According to our information, the regime’s opponents, supervised by Jordanian, Israeli and American commandos, have been moving towards Damascus since mid-August. This attack could explain the possible recourse to chemical weapons by the Syrian president.

If it is still too early to categorically rule out the argument put forward by Damascus and Moscow, who blame the massacre on the Syrian opposition, it is already possible to provide answers to a troubling question: What benefit would Assad have realized by launching an unconventional attack at the precise moment he had to allow UN inspectors — after being held up for several months — to investigate the use of chemical weapons?

First of all, operational logic. According to information obtained by Le Figaro, the first contingent of Syrian troops trained in guerrilla warfare by the Americans in Jordan have reportedly been sent into action since mid-August in southern Syria, in the region of Deraa. A first group of 300 men, undoubtedly supported by Israeli and Jordanian commandos, as well as by CIA operatives, crossed the border on August 17. A second was to have joined on the 19th. According to military sources, for several months the Americans, who do not want to put troops on the Syrian soil, nor arm any rebels controlled in part by radical Islamists, quietly assembled handpicked ASL fighters, the Free Syrian Army, in a training camp set up at the Jordanian-Syrian border.

Sense of impunity

During the summer their protégés have begun to push against Syrian battalions in the south, approaching the capital. “Their impact would now be felt in the Ghouta, where formations of the FSA were already at work, but really can make a difference on the outskirts of the fortifications of Damascus,” says David Rigoulet-Roze, a researcher at the French Institute for Strategic Analysis (IFAS).

According to this expert on the region, the idea proposed by Washington would be the possible establishment of a buffer zone separating the south of Syria, or even a no-fly zone, which would permit the opposition to train in complete security until the balance of power changes. This is the reason why the United States deployed Patriot batteries and F16s in Jordan in late June.

Recent military pressure exerted against al-Ghouta threatens the capital Damascus, the heart of the Syrian regime. In July the spokesman for President al-Assad publicly stated that the regime would not use chemical weapons in Syria “except in case of external aggression.” The intrusion of foreign agents into the south, for example…

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“Poland Should Remain a Slavic and Christian Country”

The former East Bloc nations of Central Europe are to a large extent free of the suicidal multicultural urge that is destroying most of Western Europe. The current generation of politicians and civic leaders in the former Communist countries were raised under a much more virulent ideology than Political Correctness, and thus seem to have developed antibodies that enable them to resist the current multiculti fad.

Enthusiasm for immigrants and cultural enrichment is making its way slowly into the elite political culture of Poland, but it is being resisted by ordinary Poles, who are most emphatically not keen on changing the ethnic composition of their native country.

In the story below, you’ll notice that the push to resettle African refugees in Poland is coming from — where else? — the European Union, which is quite capable of making the Poles an offer they can’t refuse.

You’ll also notice that Somalis, when given a choice, mostly prefer to settle in Western Europe, where wages and welfare benefits are considerably higher than in Poland — no fools they!

Finally, note that the authorities are willing to pay to resettle totally alien ethnics in Poland, whilst refusing to make any effort to bring home the Polish diaspora that was deported East under Stalin. This policy is much the same as that of the Swedish government, which denied entry to its Swedish brethren from the village of Gammalsvenskby in Ukraine.

These two cases demonstrate that there is an agenda at work that goes beyond mere immigration and open borders. If freedom of migration were the only issue, the Swedes of Gammalsvenskby would be welcomed in Sweden, and the Poles of Kazakhstan would be brought home to Poland. Because this isn’t happening — and is even actively resisted — you know that more sinister motives must be at work. To consolidate the Polish nation in Poland or the Swedish nation in Sweden would hinder the Great Plan to destroy traditional European ethnicities and replace them with a rainbow hodgepodge that can be more easily manipulated and controlled by new systems of trans-national governance.

The following article about the resettlement of African refugees in Poland was sent in by Takuan Seiyo, who includes this brief note:

This article is from Gazeta Wyborcza, the “Polish New York Times”. It’s a quick Google translation with some tweaking from me to make it intelligible.

The translated article:

All-Polish Youth and ONR [National-Radical Camp] Want to Close the Border to Refugees From Africa

They demand to “immediately stop the immigration of alien civilizations.” They scare with (consequences of immigration like) killings in the name of Islam and Polish schools dominated by children of refugees. “This is a threat to the security of our continent, the future of our culture, religion and identity,” sounds the alarm from the National Movement. “Down with the niggers. No mixing of our fellow citizens with visitors from Africa,” echoed supporters on the Internet.

In early August, the Maltese newspaper The Malta Independent reported that by the end of the year Poland will take in 50 refugees from Africa who now reside in Malta. The implementation decisions were to take place during the August meeting of deputy head of the Foreign Ministry Henryka Mościcka-Dendys with Maltese parliamentarians in Warsaw.

The authorities on the Mediterranean island have been struggling for years with the influx of immigrants, who are often fleeing armed conflicts in their countries. Their stories are dramatic.

Last year, half a thousand refugees drowned in the Mediterranean. Another four thousand stay in Maltese shelters. Malta, with population of 400,000 the smallest state in the European Union, is asking for help from other countries.

“We are of the opinion that the EU should show solidarity towards Member States that are faced with the problem of immigrants,” said minister Mościcka-Dendys at a meeting with Maltese parliamentarians.

Information from the Maltese newspaper electrified the Polish extreme right. The National Movement created by the All-Polish Youth and the National Radical Camp announced on its Facebook page, “No to the immigrant. Yes to the repatriant.” In their appeal to the government they call for “an immediate cessation of immigration from alien civilizations and an active posture toward the repatriation of thousands of Poles from the East”. The appeal was signed by more than three thousand. people.

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Gates of Vienna News Feed 8/22/2013

The United States, France, and Turkey all say that Bashar al-Assad’s Syrian regime has crossed the “red line” with its purported chemical attack. Russia, however, maintains that the attack was in fact a “false flag” operation staged by the Syrian rebels. Independent observers also question the timing of the event, which occurred just after international inspectors arrived in Syria, and was close to their base of operations.

In other news, hundreds of American Copts converged on Washington D.C. today to protest the Obama administration’s policy towards Egypt, and in particular its support for the Muslim Brotherhood and deposed President Mohamed Morsi.

To see the headlines and the articles, click “Continue reading” below.

Thanks to AR, C. Cantoni, ESW, Fjordman, Frontinus, Insubria, JD, Jerry Gordon, Kitman, KP, MC, Papa Whiskey, and all the other tipsters who sent these in.

Notice to tipsters: Please don’t submit extensive excerpts from articles that have been posted behind a subscription firewall, or are otherwise under copyright protection.

Caveat: Articles in the news feed are posted “as is”. Gates of Vienna cannot vouch for the authenticity or accuracy of the contents of any individual item posted here. We check each entry to make sure it is relatively interesting, not patently offensive, and at least superficially plausible. The link to the original is included with each item’s title. Further research and verification are left to the reader.

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“It’s All in Plain Sight”

It wasn’t a “Red Scare”. It was a Red reality.

Diana West appeared yesterday on Andrew Wilkow’s program on Blaze TV to talk about Socialism in America. She discussed her book, American Betrayal, which examines the penetration of the Roosevelt administration by Communist agents of influence:

Previous posts about the controversy over American Betrayal by Diana West:

2013   Aug   11   Diana West: On the Question of “Scholarship”
        13   Yet Another Circular Conservative Firing Squad
        14   Cordon Sanitaire: FAIL
        15   On Reading the Book
        16   Banishing the Cathars
        18   Form and Substance

The Iranian Infiltration of Latin America, Part 4

Below is the fourth of several parts of a summary of prosecutor Alberto Nisman’s much longer report on the 1994 bombing of the AMIA center in Buenos Aires, which was released at the end of May. The Foundation for Defense of Democracies issued the 31-page summary (pdf) when the larger report was published. (Previously: Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3)

This section discusses the recruitment strategy of Iranian intelligence in Latin America, which includes the practice of sending zealous pupils to Qom in Iran for further religious instruction — that is, for indoctrination and training in violent jihad.

Qom schools

The proselytism developed by Iranian extremists is aimed at the recruitment and/or conversion of individuals to their principles. Its final goal is to co-opt those who are easily influenced by the regime’s interests, so they can be functional to perform activities required by the intelligence station. This has been stated by Abolghasem Mesbahi: “The religious activity of the Mullahs consists in doing infiltration work in the local communities, surveillance of dissidents and recruitment of people that will be used in the future and who may even kill in the name of religion“.

Thus, Rabbani distorted his role of religious educator in order to transmit extremists’ ideas to the students who attended his classes. This has been proved by the statements made by a witness who asserted: “… during the year 1990, three students told him that Rabbani had explained to them that they should export the Revolution and told them ‘everybody is Hezbollah’ […] Rabbani made these statements to his students as part of the indoctrination imparted during their study. The witness added that Rabbani carried out this indoctrination with all the students that attended the mosque. The meaning of the expression ‘everybody is Hezbollah’ was used by Rabbani as a way to make the students understand the violent meaning he granted to the export of the Revolution“.

This same duality was replicated in Guyana, as it has been indicated by the agent Addonizio: “… in the Islamic centers that he [Abdul Kadir] directed, propaganda about Islam was made and they tried to convert people so that they would join the Shia movement in Guyana. In that search, persons of adequate profile were sought after, that is to say, that had the necessary level of commitment to be sent to Iran to complete religious instruction…“.

The indoctrination itself does not only consist in the study of Islam in the students’ home countries but also its continuance in the city of Qom, for which the candidates have to be sponsored and also approved a rigorous selection in which it is examined their religious knowledge and mainly, their commitment to the principles of the Islamic Revolution. It is interesting to mention a concrete example whose main characters are precisely, Rabbani and Kadir. In a letter dated March 20th 1999, Kadir answered Rabbani about the “mission” that the last one had entrusted him. He had to assess the aptitudes and commitment of certain members of the local Muslim community.

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On Not Provoking Muslims

Dymphna and I belong to a small rural Anglican congregation that worships in an old frame church not far from where we live. Despite the fact that it is an Episcopal church, and thus subordinate to the — gack! — ECUSA, it is not at all liberal. This is, after all, the remote countryside of Central Virginia. Most of our fellow congregants are older people who grew up around here, and are thus unafflicted by the PC disease that has infected the national church — as well as all the other mainstream Protestant denominations.

Yet our church is not what you’d call hidebound — we follow Rite 2 in the 1979 Prayer Book, sing from the 1982 hymnal, and accept the fact that women are now ordained priests in the Episcopal Church. We’re just average run-of-the-mill cultural conservatives. Our priest is a conservative, and sometimes even forwards me emails from tea party groups or the Blaze.

As a result, I don’t mind speaking up and revealing my political sympathies at church — it’s safe.

From time to time I pass on information acquired as part of my work here at Gates of Vienna, especially reports concerning the persecution of Christians in majority-Muslim countries. Other members of our church get their news mostly from the MSM, especially the television networks, which means they don’t hear much about the routine treatment meted out to Christians in Indonesia, Malaysia, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nigeria, Iraq, Syria, and Egypt.

At the service this past Sunday, the news about the mass destruction of churches in Egypt was fresh in my mind, so I stood up during the announcements and gave an account of the previous day’s reports, knowing that my fellow parishioners would have seen virtually nothing about the atrocities on their TV screens. I explained that in a space of just three days, fifty-eight churches and Christian schools in Egypt had been torched and looted by supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood, and I reminded them that the Brotherhood enjoyed the full support of the Obama administration.

An elderly lady in the third row snorted, and said, “Huh! He’s a Muslim himself, isn’t he?”

Which made me wonder:

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