On 9/11, Commit To Blocking Iran and Saudi Arabia From Ever Possessing Weapons Of Mass Destruction

The horrific terrorist attacks conducted against Americans on September 11, 2001 was not only the worst loss of life in a coordinated attack by foreign enemies, it changed the vector of American and world history.

On the 21st anniversary of the attacks, the United States posted comments by President Biden about “Patriot Day” at various embassies around the world. In the Middle East and North Africa, the American embassies took very different approaches.

The US embassies in Israel, Egypt and Yemen were unique in posting Biden’s remarks about the 9/11 terrorism. The embassies in other countries which are considered US allies, such as Jordan which receives $1.45 billion in annual aid from the U.S., Qatar, which houses the largest US military presence in the region, and Saudi Arabia, where President Biden just visited to increase its oil exports, all opted to remain silent on the solemn day.

What do these three countries have in common?

Israel has been fighting the scourge of Palestinian Islamic radical terrorism for decades. Egypt and Yemen are fighting terrorist forces backed by the Islamic Republic of Iran. Many of the other regional Muslim-majority countries back those terrorist groups like Hamas, or have other US-designated terrorist groups operating openly in their borders, including Turkey, Lebanon and Qatar.

As we remember the victims of the 9/11 attacks, we must also remember the state sponsors of terrorism – Iran and Saudi Arabia in particular – and make sure that they never have access to weapons of mass destruction.

Related articles:

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Will Biden Enable Hamas’s Sponsors of Iran, Qatar and Turkey

Some Global Supporters of the P5+1 Iran Deal

Islamic and Alt-Left Extremists Declare that Normalization With Zionists Is Against Sharia Law

The Islamic spiritual leader of Iran, Ayatollah Khamenei, addressed the Muslim world on May 7, 2021 to inspire them to reject any peaceful relations with the Jewish State and its supporters. He said that “Israel is not a state, but a terrorist camp against the Palestinian people and other Muslim peoples” and that “Muslim and Christian scholars must declare that normalization is forbidden by Sharia.” He encouraged Palestinian youth to battle the “usurping entity” and urged the 14 million Palestinians around the world to return to “the Holy Land” to decide “the fate of the [Jewish] foreign settlers.

The focus of this [Muslim] unity should be internal jihad and distrust of enemies. And Palestinian politics should not depend on the main enemy of the Palestinians, namely America, the British and the vile Zionists.

Islamic spiritual leader of Iran, Ayatollah Khamenei, May 7, 2021

Khamenei concluded his remarks calling for waging war: “The Palestinian Mujahideen [militant jihadists] must ably continue their legitimate and moral struggle against the usurping entity [Israel] until this entity acquiesced [surrenders].

Iranian Ayatollah Khamenei

These sentiments were echoed in California by the San Francisco Executive Director of the Council of American Islamic Relations (CAIR), Zahra Billoo, six months later. While addressing the American Muslims for Palestine conference, she made clear that all Zionists are enemies. “Know your enemies, and I’m not going to sugar-coat that. They are your enemies. There are organizations and infrastructure out there who are working to harm you. Make no mistake of it. They would sell you down the line if they could, and they very often do behind your back. I mean the Zionist organizations, I mean the foreign policy organizations that say they’re not Zionists but want a two-state solution. I’m not a Palestinian myself but it’s my understanding that that is laughable. So know your enemies.” Billoo listed some of them: “We need to pay attention to the Anti-Defamation League. We need to pay attention to the Jewish Federation. We need to pay attention to the Zionist synagogues. We need to pay attention to the Hillel chapters on our campuses. Because just because they’re your friend today, doesn’t mean that they have your back when it comes to human rights. So oppose the vehement fascists but oppose the polite Zionists too. They are not your friends.

Billoo continued that “We have to connect the dots between the organizations that promote Zionist agendas, materials, marketing and legislation are the same ones that want to ban Muslims, are the same ones that want to pass anti-sharia legislation.

CAIR came out strongly to support Billoo’s remarks, stating it “continue[s] to proudly stand by Zahra and all American Muslim leaders who face smears and threats because they dare to express an opinion about Palestinian human rights.

CAIR Executive Director Zahra Billoo addressing American Muslims for Palestine, November 27, 2021

A Massachusetts-based socialist extremist group that stands against “the colonization of Palestine, US imperialism, policing, displacement, and other interlocking systems of oppression” produced an anti-Semitic “Mapping Project,” which embraced the anti-normalization of any Zionist – person or organization. The group falsely claimed that “institutional support for the colonization of Palestine is structurally tied to policing and systemic white supremacy.” It listed names and addresses of organizations like Yachad New England which helps individuals with disabilities. The site called out this aid organization as “complicit in propaganda/normalization of Zionism.” It included Yachad’s address so extremists can easily track down and target disabled Jews.

Amalek would blush.

Socialists have bonded with Islamic extremists in Iran and the United States in calling for a jihad against anyone who supports the rights of Jews to live in the Jewish holy land and to have self-determination. These jihadists are branding Zionists and their supporters as enemies not just to Palestinians, but to the entire world.

Anti-normalization is now enshrined in Sharia and Progressive law, and is coming to a community near you.

Related articles:

Attacking Jews & Zionists: Arabs and Muslims

The Insidious Jihad in America

Is Ilhan Omar’s Mentor the Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei?

The Banners of Jihad

Pick Your Jihad; Choose Your Infidel

Featured Idiot: John Brennan, Obama’s CIA Chief

On April 27, 2021, The New York Times offered its readers an opinion piece by former President Obama’s Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, John Brennan. His ridiculous piece was called “Why Biden Must Watch This Palestinian Movie.

John Brennan, Former Director of the CIA (photo: Al Drago, The New York Times)

There are too many lies and omissions to do a line-by-line review but some major themes emerge which highlight Brennan’s willful blindness of the Arab-Israeli conflict.

Major Lie #1:
Israel No Longer Has Security Concerns

Brennan noted that in his visit from Jordan to Israel in 1975, Palestinian Arabs had to go through aggressive security screening which he understood as “I knew that Israel had legitimate security concerns in the aftermath of the 1967 and 1973 wars, worries that had been heightened by attacks on Israeli and Jewish targets by Palestinian terrorist organizations.” Those “worries” included wars to annihilate the Jewish State in 1967 and 1973, and the Arab world’s “Three No’s” regarding making peace, recognizing and negotiating with Israel. The Palestinian attacks were not limited to Israel but countries which supported the Jewish State, and included the assassination of U.S. Presidential hopeful Robert Kennedy as well as tens of airplane hijackings.

Brennan commented that today’s world is a far cry from his 1975 experience, as Israel struck peace agreements with many Arab nations and made “significant progress in reducing violence carried out by Palestinians inside and outside the occupied territories,” with the exception of Hamas.

First, well over twenty Arab and Muslim countries still refuse to recognize Israel. Those Arab countries which have recently welcomed relations with the Jewish State were loudly condemned by Palestinians.

Second, the reason that there has been such a reduction in violence is because of the security barrier that Israel erected in reaction to the so-called “Second Intifada.” It is that very security barrier that Brennan criticized in the article, with a completely fabricated reason for that barrier’s existence:

Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, has spearheaded relentless expansion of settlements in the West Bank. That expansion has brought along more concrete walls, security barriers and control points, further reducing the spaces where Palestinians can live, graze their flocks, tend their olive groves and vegetable gardens without being challenged by their occupiers.”

As President Biden is fond of saying, that’s complete “malarkey.” Palestinian Arab terrorism brought the security barrier, not Jewish family homes.

The Second Intifada – not waged from Gaza but from the “West Bank” – was omitted from Brennan’s narrative. The “stabbing intifada” and the “car ramming intifada” from the West Bank in 2015 and 2016 were similarly ignored.

Further, the Muslim and Arab actors encircling and threatening Israel are irrelevant in Brennan’s opinion. The Islamic Republic of Iran has stated its desire to destroy Israel, yet Brennan’s boss gave the country over $100 billion and a legal pathway to nuclear weapons. Iran supports Hezbollah in Lebanon (which fought a war with Israel in 2006), Syria and Hamas in Gaza, each at Israel’s borders.

Brennan continued in his imaginative telling of history that former President Trump “senselessly severed funding to the Palestinian Authority.” Trump took those actions specifically because acting President of the Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas refused to stop inciting violence against Israelis by committing to send monies to Palestinian terrorists.

So much for Palestinian Arabs and the Muslim world being peaceful and welcoming Israelis.

Major Lie #2:
Palestinians Have Made No Progress Towards Autonomy

Brennan added that “Despite sharply reduced tensions between Israel and the Arab world, the Palestinian people themselves have seen no appreciable progress in their quest to live in their own sovereign state.” Really? Since 1975 there has been no progress?

  • Israel handed many cities and towns – including the holy city of Bethlehem which was designated to be an international city in the 1947 U.N. Partition Plan – to the Palestinians in the 1990’s. This was the first time that local Arabs every had sovereignty in the region.
  • Israel abandoned Gaza in 2005. It was rewarded with wars from the region in 2008, 2012 and 2014. Missiles and arson balloons continue to bombard Israeli civilian centers from the strip.
  • The Palestinian Authority was created in the 1990’s as part of several agreements with Israel. The PA last held presidential elections and legislative elections in 2005 and 2006, respectively. At that time, the Palestinians elected a Holocaust denier as the president and the terrorist group Hamas which is sworn to the destruction of Israel to 58% of the parliament. The front-runner in the proposed 2021 presidential elections is a terrorist in an Israeli jail convicted of killing five and injuring many.
  • Despite Palestinians having autonomy in Gaza, an outrageous 77% of Gazans support armed attacks against Israeli civilians in a December 2020 Palestinian poll.

Palestinians have made significant advances towards independence. It has not reduced their quest for Israeli blood.

Inverted Cause-and-Effect; Upside Down Conclusions

Brennan’s fictitious narrative of the security barrier is emblematic of his distorted vision of the steps towards an enduring peace. Ignoring the fact that the security barrier was needed and built to stop West Bank Palestinians from slaughtering Israelis, and retelling it as something Israel elected to erect to protect Israeli “settlements”, turned Israelis into the aggressors rather than the victims.

Brennan wrote that Palestinian children “grow up traumatized by injustice, discrimination and violence. They live with the feeling that their existence is controlled by people who don’t care about their welfare, their safety or their future.” This is upside down. Brennan argued that the “people who don’t care” and make their lives miserable are Israelis instead of the Palestinian leadership which uses its resources for weaponry to attack Israel and for “martyr payments” to terrorists.

So Brennan celebrated Biden restarting the money spigot even though the Palestinians have not changed their violent activities.


The Times featured Obama’s CIA chief’s distorted view of history and of the present in the Arab-Israeli conflict. Ignoring reality six years ago, the Obama administration enriched and empowered a state sponsor of terrorism. Brennan now hopes that the new Biden administration will similarly be oblivious to Palestinian lies and loathing, and enrich and create a new state sponsor of terrorism.


Related First One Through articles:

Israel: Security in a Small Country

Seeing Security through a Screen

Cause and Effect: Making Gaza

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Will Biden Enable Hamas’s Sponsors of Iran, Qatar and Turkey

Hamas is the rabidly anti-Semitic terrorist group which runs Gaza and touts itself as simply a “resistant group” while pro-Palestinian media calls it a “militant group.” The group actively tries to recast itself as a legitimate political party and voice of Palestinians as it won 58% of the parliament in elections held in 2007. Its supporters go so far to call it a “social justice” movement, so as to allow more funds to flow into its coffers, such as former head of the UK’s Labour Party Jeremy Corbyn who said:

“The idea that an organisation that is dedicated towards the good of the Palestinian people and bringing about long-term peace and social justice and political justice in the whole region should be labelled as a terrorist organisation by the British government is really a big, big historical mistake and I would invite the government to reconsider their position on this matter and start talking directly to Hamas and Hezbollah…”

The Trump administration pushed aggressively for Europe to stop the flow of money to Palestinian terrorists, however it is unclear if the incoming Biden Administration will follow suit or will make accommodations to breathe new life and money into the terrorist group abutting Israel.

The main governmental sponsors of Hamas are Iran, Qatar and Turkey. Iran makes no secret of its desire to destroy Israel, making its support understandable. Biden has made clear that he intends to reengage with Iran and end the crippling financial sanctions imposed by President Trump.

Saudi Arabia just previewed that it is going to resolve the blockade it imposed on Qatar as a “gift for Biden,” as described by an advisor in the region. Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the UAE and Egypt had all cut diplomatic ties with Qatar due to its support for terrorism. That is seemingly coming to a close.

Lastly there is Turkey and its Muslim Brotherhood friends who have celebrated the Biden victory. Turkey’s banks have been convicted of funding Hamas’s terrorist activities and the government has given Turkish citizenship to Hamas operatives, including one who plotted to kill the mayor of Jerusalem.

Then-Vice President Joe Biden meets with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, March 9, 2016. (Flash90)

Ismail Haniyeh, leader of the Hamas celebrated Biden’s win and saidWe call on President-elect Joe Biden to make a historic correction to the discriminatory American policy toward the Palestinian people that has caused instability in the region and the world.” It would appear that Hamas is not just looking for direct aid from a Biden government but is very hopeful that indirect funds will flow via the terrorist group’s sponsors in Iran, Qatar and Turkey, and possibly even from the European Union which curtailed sponsoring Palestinian terrorism during President Trump’s term.


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While Joe Biden Passionately Defends Israel, He Ignores Jewish Rights and the History of the Jewish State

Joe Biden Stabs a Finger at Israel

Bernie Sanders’ Antisemitic and Anti-Zionist Friends

Considering Mohammed Morsi and Hamas: The Muslim Brotherhood in Power

Netanyahu Props Up Failed Arab Leaders

A Review of the The New York Times Anti-Israel Bias

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Israel Has Much Higher Claims to The West Bank Than Golan Heights

On March 21, 2019, US President Donald Trump said that it was time to recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights. The nature of the timing was viewed by cynics as a nod to help Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu win the election happening in a couple of weeks. For people who understand the nature of the strategic security need for the Golan, the timing had much more to do with the ending of the eight-year civil war in Syria and the rapidly expanding deployment of Iranian forces into Syria. An Iranian-Syrian axis in the Golan Heights would certainly lead to a war with Israel which would kill tens of thousands of people, conservatively.

While there was certainly some benefit politically to Netanyahu for the gesture, the rationale for Israel’s control of the plateau is definitely about security. But the arguments applied to the Golan are relatively weak compared to all of the reasons Israel should have sovereignty over the “West Bank.”

History

Jews lived in the Golan Heights for thousands of years. The ancient Kingdom of Israel occupied most of southern Lebanon and Syria and dozens of synagogues over 1000 years old can be found in the area. But most Jews did not live in that area, certainly compared to the West Bank, over the past 100 years.

Religion

There are no particularly important religious sites for Jews in the Golan. However, almost all of the sacred sites for Jews are located in the “West Bank,” which the Jordanians seized in 1949 including Jerusalem, the Cave of the Jewish Patriarchs in Hebron, Rachel’s Tomb in Bethlehem and Joseph’s Tomb in Nablus/Shechem.

Legal

When the global powers opted to divide the Ottoman Empire after World War I, they set some arbitrary lines. The French took the mandates of Lebanon and Syria and the British took Palestine. While the Syrians wanted control of all of Palestine, the global powers allotted Syria the Golan Heights, and Syria controlled the area until Israel attacked it in a preemptive defensive war in 1967.

The situation could not be more different regarding the “West Bank.” That area has always been a core part of the Jewish holy land for thousands of years. It was set as an integral part of the Jewish Homeland in international law in 1920 and 1922, specifically stating that no person should be denied the right to live there based on their religion.

The Jordanian army seized the land of Palestine and annexed it in 1949, contrary to all international laws, and evicted all of the Jewish inhabitants. The Jordanians then attacked Israel again in 1967 and lost the land for which they never had any rights.

Security

The security situation in the Golan is extraordinary, due both to the height and reach of the area which can cover all of northern Israel, as well as the military operation of an Iranian-Syrian pact.

But the security situation from the West Bank is also severe. The spine of the western West Bank is very high and overlooks all of Israel’s major population centers and airport. The miles of borders dwarf the size of borders in the Golan and Gaza.


The contrast between the Golan Heights and the West Bank is striking:

  • Original rights: Syria was allotted the Golan Heights roughly 100 years ago, while the West Bank was allotted to the Jewish homeland at the same time.
  • Rights of holder: Israel took the Golan from Syria which had rights to the land, while Israel took the West Bank from Jordan which had NO RIGHTS to the land.
  • Method of acquisition: Israel took the Golan in a preemptive attack, and took the West Bank in a DEFENSIVE ATTACK.
  • History/connection: While Israel has a connection to the Golan Heights, it pales compared to the eternal connection to the “West Bank” and Jerusalem.

It was President Barack Obama who saw the Israeli-Arab Conflict as one based purely on security. If he were president today and saw Iran embedding itself into Syria, he might have sought to help secure Israel’s rights and defenses in the Golan, just as Trump announced.

But Trump sees the Jewish State from more than just a security or political standpoint. As he appreciates the long history, deep religious connection and legal rights of Israel to the West Bank, one must foresee Trump embracing Israel’s annexation of that region as well.


Related First.One.Through articles:

Recognition of Acquiring Disputed Land in a Defensive War

I call BS: You Never Recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s Capital

The Many Lies of Jimmy Carter

Obama’s “Palestinian Land”

Israel was never a British Colony; Judea and Samaria are not Israeli Colonies

Maybe Truman Should Not Have Recognized Israel

The US Recognizes Israel’s Reality

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Is Ilhan Omar’s Mentor the Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei?

Representative Ilhan Omar (D-MN) has gotten herself into repeated hot water for attacks on Israel and its supporters, as many people have viewed her comments as anti-Semitic. She is emblematic of a new group of alt-left politicians who squarely focus on Israel and any of its perceived misdeeds.

It is a curious phenomenon, not only because Israel is the most liberal country in the Middle East / North Africa (MENA) region by far, but that people like Omar pay no attention to their native countries as they attack Israel.

Consider an important point for progressives – the death penalty. Only Israel and Oman had zero executions and zero people sentenced to death in 2017 among the MENA countries. In Omar’s native Somalia, 24 people were executed by the government, almost double the total of 14 in 2016.

Israel is one of only five countries in MENA in which being gay is legal. In several countries, such as the Islamic Republic of Iran, being gay is a capital offense, with most gays hung from cranes in the center of the city. In Ilhan’s native Somalia, being gay is punishable with jail time.

The dynamic is much the same regarding women’s rights. Israel is one of only five MENA countries that score in the top half of the world’s rankings for inclusion, justice and safety for women. Ilhan’s native Somalia is ranked as one of the worst countries in the world for women. It is estimated that 95% of females in Somalia have forced genital mutilation. It is ranked as the worst country for maternal health.

The problems for Somalia continue. It is ranked as number 180 out of 180 by Transparency International Corruption Index, the worst country in the world. Israel ranked as number 34 out of 180, in the top quintile.

Somalia is considered the worst countries to be a journalist according to the Global Impunity Index of 2017 – worse than even Syria and Iraq.

Regardless of the issue – gay rights, women’s rights, environmental matters, animal rights, freedom of speech, press and religion – Israel performs better than its neighbors. It is in a completely different league than Somalia which is one of the worst counties in the world by every measure.

So why would an immigrant from Somalia to the United States focus so much of her attention on a small country thousands of miles from the United States? Why would a new member of Congress not be concerned with her failed native land? Is it in her constituents’ interests for her to be admonished by fellow Democrats for an obsessive focus on Israel?

As detailed in “Rep. Ilhan Omar and The 2001 Durban Racism Conference,” many Arab and Muslim countries – and their supporters – believe that Israel is an inherently racist enterprise, built on the ethnic cleansing and genocide of Palestinian Arabs and the theft of Muslim holy lands. They believe that the supporters of such evil regime – the United States being the most powerful – are either evil and racist themselves (like Donald Trump), or are being manipulated by Zionist forces.  All of Ilhan Omar’s comments to date seemingly support this viewpoint: the Jewish State is racist and that pro-Zionists are racists and/or are manipulated by racist puppet-masters. Sounds pretty anti-Semitic, no?

Should Omar want to wash the stain of obsessive anti-Zionism which is very much tied to anti-Semitism, there is a simple action she could take: clearly declare that Israel has a right to exist in peace and security. Without such statement, no one will consider anything else she has to say. Other helpful actions would include:

  • Acknowledging the Jewish people’s long history in the holy land going back thousands of years, including being the majority of Jerusalem since the 1860’s
  • Acknowledging that the Jewish people have a right to self-determination
  • Acknowledging that Israel is a liberal democracy
  • Acknowledging Israel’s remarkable contributions to the world in the areas of technology and medicine
  • Acknowledging that all people in the United States have a right to advocate for the causes they hold dear, including the pro-Israel community
  • Considering Israel within the scope of its neighbors, and not pretending it resides in a peaceful neighborhood like Sweden
  • Considering the Israel-Palestinian Conflict within the scope of other territorial disputes, including: Cyprus-Turkey; Morocco-Western Sahara; China-Tibet; and India-Pakistan over Kashmir

No one will ever claim that anyone or any country is perfect; that’s the beauty and shame of being human. In being flawed, there is always room for improvement. Constructive criticism from a friend is an important part of growing. People who love America want America to be better, and people who love Israel want Israel to be better.

However, what is most unwelcome is for someone with no connection and no relationship to the country and who hasn’t shared a positive word, to chastise it on a global stage and urge for punitive actions. How much hatred must such a person harbor to go out of their way and ignore much worse and more immediate issues, to assault a people who have been subject to more hatred and attacks than any people on earth?

Omar tweeted in August 2017 “Syria’s Assad has become an icon of the far right in America,” suggesting that some Americans were interested in murdering hundreds of thousands of their fellow citizens. She cannot be surprised if some of her fellow Americans who proudly support the Jewish State compare her and her alt-left comrades to the Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who seeks a new Muslim Caliphate and the destruction of Israel. This is the echo of Omar’s own words.


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When Hate Returns

Paying to Murder Jews: From Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Iran to the Palestinian Authority

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Reuters Can’t Spare Ink on Iranian Anti-Semitism

There are very few news services that remain unbiased in the Arab-Israel Conflict. Progressive media like The New York Times report over and again that Israel is a far right-wing racist country while the Arab countries are moderates. Meanwhile, Fox News will forever take Israel’s side in the conflict. It often seems that the only party to report on the news while providing context in a neutral fashion is Reuters.

That had been the hope anyway.

On February 16, 2019, Reuters posted an article called “Iran Rejects Anti-Semitism Allegation by Pence.”  In the first two paragraphs, Reuters relayed the charge by the US Vice President against Iran, without including a single word of an actual quote. Over the next three paragraphs, the media outlet relayed the response by Iran that the Pence accusation was ridiculous and quoted two Iranian officials, using 71 of their own words.


US Vice President visits Auschwitz Death Camp in Poland

Reuters had quoted a few words from Pence a few days earlier when he made the comments about Iran after to visiting the Auschwitz Nazi Death Camp in Poland. In that article, Reuters sought to give some context to the state of Jews in Iran:

“Iran’s ancient Jewish community has slumped to an estimated 10,000-20,000 from 85,000 at the time of the 1979 Islamic Revolution, but it is believed to be the biggest in the Middle East outside Israel.”

It would repeat the exact sentence in the February 19 article.

How is a drop in the Jewish population by 82% over the past 40 years not underscored with horror? Why did Reuters add the word “but,” to make it sound that the Islamic Republic of Iran isn’t ruthless and horrible in its treatment of the minority Jewish population? First, the only reason why Iran has more Jews than other Arab countries in the region including Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, Libya, Egypt, Yemen, Syria and Iraq was that those countries wiped out their ancient Jewish populations between 1948 and 1978, while the pre-1979 Islamic Revolution Iran (headed by the American ally, the Shah) retained most its Jews. But once Iran declared war on the West in 1979, it has been rapidly ridding its Jews. Second, to put the 82% decline of the Jewish population in perspective, the Arab population in Israel over the past 40 years has grown by 166%, from 706,000 to 1.88 million. If the Israeli Arab population had gone the way of Iranian Jews for the past 40 years, the current Arab population in Israel would be just 127,000, less than 7% of the current total. Where is the false outcry of ethnic cleansing and where is it actually happening, and why is Reuters failing to point it out?

The February 19 article went on to quote an Iranian leader that “the Holocaust was a disaster,” seemingly refuting Pence’s charge. However Reuters would write nothing about the annual Holocaust cartoon contest  that Iran holds each year. It made no mention of the Supreme Islamic Leader of Iran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei questioning whether the Holocaust ever happened. A curious omission, considering the basis of Pence’s comment stemmed from his visit to a Nazi Death Camp.

The February 19 article would continue with another paragraph meant to provide context for the reader, this one about the nature of Iran’s threats against Israel:

“A senior Iranian Revolutionary Guards commander in January threatened Israel, which Iran does not recognize, with destruction if it attacks Iran, state media reported.”

Note that Reuters wrote that Iran said it would destroy Israel as a matter of self defense, seemingly a reasonable stance. Reuters neglected to write about Khamenei’s comment that Israel is a “cancerous tumor” that must be fought and removed to realize the “complete liberation of Palestine.” Those vile Iranian comments from its Supreme Leader have absolutely nothing to do with Iran responding to an Israeli attack; they were simply threats of destruction.

Biased reporting against Israel is a hallmark of outfits like The New York Times and CNN. It is distressing to see more balanced media like Reuters whitewashing the genocidal calls and actions from Iran. #AlternativeFacts


Related First.One.Through articles:

Paying to Murder Jews: From Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Iran to the Palestinian Authority

In the Shadow of the Holocaust, The New York Times Fails to Flag Muslim Anti-Semitism

The Holocaust and the Nakba

Abbas’s Speech and the Window into Antisemitism and Anti-Zionism

The New York Times Thinks that the Jews from Arab Countries Simply “Immigrated”

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NY Times Disgraceful Journeys

As media companies have come under financial strain due to the availability of plentiful free and immediate news sources online and the collapse of the print advertising industry, the companies have sought new methods of generating revenue.

As part of such endeavor, The New York Times got into the travel business.

The Times markets its “Journeys” as a way to not only see the world, but to gain an understanding of the “history & context” of the countries with “featured experts.” Not surprisingly, the paper’s infamous pro-Arab and anti-Israel orientation fills the Times’ brochures.

Consider the Times description of its trip to Iran (below). The main headline of “How Much Do You Understand?” seems to beg the reader into an opportunity to learn. The text for Iran is as follow:

“Iran: Tales from Persia

Persia. Iran. For 2,500 years, this powerful country has entranced, mystified and beguiled the world. Discover the ancient secrets and modern complexities of this influential land on a 13-day itinerary, visiting some of the world’s oldest archaeological sites and the family home of the religious leader who engineered Iran’s transition to an Islamic republic. Welcome to the once-forbidden land of Iran.”

The featured expert is “Gary Wintz, a writer and lecturer, has traveled to Iran regularly since the 1980s and is an expert on the cultural and political landscape there. He joins all our departures.

The trip sounds very exciting. So much intrigue and history.

There is no mention that this country is one of the most repressive in the world. This is a government that hangs gays by cranes in the street – literally. It has fomented civil wars in Yemen, Iraq and Syria. It has publicly called for the destruction of Israel. It leads the entire Middle East in executions  (more than every country in the region COMBINED). It executes minors.

No worries. The NYTimes will tell you that its mysterious and beguiling.

At least this year’s “featured expert” has been to Iran. In 2016, the featured expert was the notorious Op-Ed Israel-basher, Roger Cohen. He probably told the tour participants how terrible it was that Israel opposed Iran getting nuclear weapons.

There is only one other country in the world that executes minors: Saudi Arabia. The Times will gladly take you there too.

Saudi Arabia and the Emirates: The Past and Future of Oil

Oil transformed the Arabian Peninsula, bringing wealth into a region steeped in tradition and heightening tensions with oil-dependent Western nations. On this 10-day journey accompanied by New York Times journalists, learn more about Saudi Arabia, on the cusp of change. Explore the conservatism that still grips Saudi Arabia (women, you may need to bring a head scarf), then see the modern architectural gem that is Abu Dhabi.

Saudi Arabia, where Islam was born, remains a deeply conservative country where women are only now being allowed to drive and alcohol is not served. It’s also one of the most important allies of the United States, even though they don’t always see eye-to-eye. Journey to Jidda, Al-Ula, Riyadh and Dammam to better understand the relationship between these two nations. Hear perspectives from oil industry and government officials and learn how Saudi Arabia keeps its grip on its past even as it tries to embrace its future. Then travel to Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates, and see how it has used its oil wealth to create a city of culture.”

The Times pointed out that the country is “deeply conservative” but ignored that it is rated one of the “worst of the worst” repressive countries by Freedom House. It is the only country in the world that has public beheadings. Seriously, even today.

No worries. You’ll get to see a “modern architectural gem” with the Times.

In regards to Egypt, the Times could not be bothered to mention anything “conservative” about the country.

Egypt is the land of “powerful dynasties” and “New York Times experts will help you piece together the life and times of a powerful ancient civilization and share their vision for the country’s future.”

How wonderful! Not an iota of anything controversial. Did the Times mention that Egypt is one of the worst countries to be a Christian according to Open Doors? That the Arab Spring swept out one long-time strongman, and a military coup took out his replacement? Terrorism targeting tourists? Why would it? This is the Times.

Morocco? It’s gorgeous! “A land of of legend and intrigue… delve deep into this colorful nation.” Illegal annexation of Western Sahara? Never heard of it.

For some of the worst murderous regimes in the world, involved with human rights abuses in their own countries as well as active participation in killing many tens and hundreds of thousands of people, the most the NY Times could muster about the Islamic countries was that Saudi Arabia is “deeply conservative” and “don’t always see eye-to-eye” with the United States. Remarkable.

But it gets worse.

You can perhaps try to forgive the Times that is trying to sell a vacation package to make a few more dollars. Why highlight the bad (actually evil) when marketing a trip for several thousands of dollars?

The NY Times also offers a trip of Israel. Surely the Times would highlight the miracle that is the rising star of the Middle East.

The paper which claims to be “a leader in its evenhanded coverage of Israel,” seems to think that the only democracy in the Middle East, the technological and environmental leader, the most liberal country for thousands of miles in any direction, needs some “balance” in its “Journeys” packages. Not Iran nor Saudi Arabia nor Egypt nor other Middle eastern lands. Only Israel.

This is from the Times Journey’s website on the Israel trip:

In 2018, Israel will observe its 70th anniversary as a nation. But its history goes back more than 5,000 years, and even now, its future promises many difficulties. On this nine-day itinerary, travel with experts from The New York Times, a leader in its evenhanded coverage of Israel, Palestinians and the Middle East. Enjoy extraordinary opportunities to hear from opinion makers, scholars, grassroots activists and media experts.

Travel behind the media lens to explore the broad spectrum of the Israeli-Palestinian experience on a journey through millennia of history, politics and religion. Explore one of the most fascinating destinations in the world, and seize this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to participate in the next chapter of history. Learn about the evolution of Israeli and Palestinian identities by understanding the region’s past struggles while considering its current political reality and contemplating its future. With unparalleled access and New York Times guidance, this unforgettable trip will present this volatile region in a new light.”

How is it that a trip of Israel, a country with so many incredible things to cover in both ancient history, religion, economy, arts and technology, could get wrapped into a discussion about Palestinians (three times!)? Why is Israel uniquely described as having “difficulties” and “struggles” in a “volatile region”? More people have died in the wars that Iran and Saudi Arabia have been fighting over the past three years than the entire 70-year history of Israel.

Saudi Arabia is noted as the place “where Islam was born.” Is it too much for the Times to point out that Israel is the Jewish homeland?

In Iran, people are invited to visit “some of the world’s oldest archaeological sites.” Are there not enough ruins in Israel to highlight?

The Times puts on a unique lens for Israel. Consider the itinerary on the first full day of the trip, called “Jerusalem: Understanding the Borders and Territories.” The schedule includes: “This morning, attend a talk by Avi Issacharoff, an Israeli journalist who specializes in Palestinian affairs. Learn about his work, including the geopolitical TV thriller “Fauda” (Arabic for “Chaos.”) Then, drive north to the Qalandiya checkpoint to enter the West Bank for a guided tour led by Rami Nazzal, a Palestinian and New York Times contributor. Visit a Palestinian refugee camp, the city of Al-Bireh and homes near the Psagot Israeli settlement. After lunch at a local Palestinian restaurant, meet with a senior Palestinian official to discuss the history and current state of Israeli-Palestinian affairs. End the day with a driving tour through Ramallah, which serves as the de facto administrative capital of the Palestinian National Authority.” On the New York Times’ trip to Israel, visitors adopt the Palestinian narrative from the outset.

A visit to Israel’s parliament, the Knesset in Jerusalem? To it’s Supreme Court? No way! The trip to Israel and a tour starting in Jerusalem visits “the de facto administrative capital of the Palestinian Authority.” Heaven-forbid actually spending a trip to Israel in Israel’s capital city.

The New York Times is not remotely fair to Israel even while it tries to make a few bucks on its travel packages. Do you think there’s an iota of even-handedness in its news stories?


Related First.One.Through articles:

Murderous Governments of the Middle East

Paying to Murder Jews: From Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Iran to the Palestinian Authority

Is Israel Reforming the Muslim Middle East? Impossible According to The NY Times

The New York Times will Keep on Telling You: Jews are not Native to Israel

First.One.Through video:

Saudi Arabia’s Repressive Regime (music by The Cars)

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Is Israel Reforming the Muslim Middle East? Impossible According to The NY Times

The New York Times has been advancing the notion that liberal values are popping up in the Middle East. Despite the actual murder and mayhem brought by the “Arab Spring,” the Times published articles about the advancement of women’s rights in Iran and Saudi Arabia, as well as the acceptance of the gay and lesbian communities in Lebanon.

These recent phenomena may be true, but it is interesting that Israel is never mentioned in the articles – the one country that has equality for women and the LGBT community.

LGBT Rights

Consider the December 31, 2017 article “Coming Out in Lebanon, and Helping it to be More Tolerant.” The article detailed that most of the countries in the Middle East have laws punishing homosexual activity, naming several Arab countries before highlighting the unique position of Lebanon:

Throughout the Middle East, gay, lesbian and transgender people face formidable obstacles to living a life of openness and acceptance in conservative societies.

Although Jordan decriminalized same-sex behavior in 1951, the gay community remains marginalized. Qatar, Sudan, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen all outlaw same-sex relations. In Saudi Arabia, homosexuality can be punished by flogging or death.

In Egypt, at least 76 people have been arrested in a crackdown since September, when a fan waved a rainbow flag during a concert by Masrou’ Leila, a Lebanese band with an openly gay singer.

If there is one exception, it has been Lebanon. While the law can still penalize homosexual acts, the society has slowly grown more tolerant as activists have worked for more rights and visibility.”

This is preposterous. The “one exception” of tolerance “throughout the Middle East” is Israel, not Lebanon.

The International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association (ILGA) produced detailed reports about the countries of the world that  protect or criminalize LGBT relationships. In every year, Israel stands out as an island of acceptance for the LGBT community for thousands of miles.

From Morocco to Taiwan and from South Africa to Russia, there is a single country that has laws protecting the LGBT community. And it is not Lebanon, but Israel.


The New York Times December 31, 2017 article on page 10 claiming that Lebanon is the only country in the Middle East with gay rights.

Women’s Rights

On December 29, 2017, the New York Times published an article on its cover page called “Unlikely Iranian-Saudi Race: Easing Restrictions on Women.” The article advanced the notion that Iran and Saudi Arabia are both slowly easing restrictions on women in their countries in a competitive environment of liberalization. Saudi Arabia changed laws allowing women to drive, so Iran eased the law regarding women wearing a hijab.

The article quoted “Suad Abu-Dayyeh, a Palestinian who is the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) consultant for Equality Now, a global women’s advocacy group.” The article noted that “she was cautious about concluding that the changes in Iran were related to the Saudi relaxation,” but she did state that “any advancement in any country will really affect the situation in the neighboring countries.

And still, the New York Times did not mention Israel which leads the MENA region in women’s rights.

If the Times really believed in the concept that it opted to cite, that the activity in one country could influence the actions in neighboring countries, why not mention the country that leads the entire region in human rights, especially for women and the LGBT communities? Is it too remarkable to assume that the countries in the region are trying to catch up with Israel, whether in technology, the economy or human rights? Saudi Arabia announced its Vision 2030 plans just a few months ago, as noted by the NY Times on October 25, 2017, that the country needed to move beyond oil into technology. Are all of these events regarding the economy and human rights simply coincidences with no relationship to the marvel of Israel next door?

In the closing days of 2017, the Times sought to educate its readership that the Muslim and Arab countries are in the process of liberal reformation – on their own. The paper did so while deliberately excluding the factual presence of Israel in the Middle East and its possible positive influence of reforming the Muslim nations in the region.

The New York Times has moved beyond the “pinkwashing” of Israel into new levels of #AlternativeFacts.


Related First.One.Through articles:

Gay Rights in the Middle East

The Color Coded Lexicon of Israel’s Bigotry: It’s not Just PinkWashing

I’m Offended, You’re Dead

Politicians React to Vile and Vulgar Palestinian Hatred

Honor Killings in Gaza

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Losing Rights

There are some rights that are considered immutable, granted to human beings everywhere, while other rights are granted by a country’s laws or local society. But individuals and countries can lose those rights if they are deemed threats to society.

Individual Rights in the United States

Consider the right to vote in the United States.

While it was given to adult white men at the birth of the country, it took the passage of the 15th Amendment of the US Constitution in 1870 for black men to get the right to vote. Women got the right to vote in 1919 when the 19th Amendment passed. To this day, citizens under 18 years old are still denied the right to vote.

The right to vote in elections is NOT immutable, as it is conditioned on a level of decent behavior. Many states rescind the right to vote for people who are convicted of a felony. Some states suspend the right while the person is in prison; other states ban the right to vote permanently.

The right to own a gun in the USA is also subject to limitations.

While the 2nd Amendment gave citizens the right “to keep and bear arms,federal law also rescinds such right for people in certain categories, such as convicted felons, domestic abusers and people with certain kinds of mental health issues. The government has opted to remove certain rights of the individual because of their threat to the well-being of society.

That principle relates to countries as well.

Iranian Quest for Nuclear Power

There are nine countries with nuclear weapons and 31 with nuclear power. Despite its prevalence, the world was alarmed when Iran wanted to pursue its own nuclear ambitions. Why did so many countries enforce severe sanctions on Iran, when it was just pursuing a nuclear program similar to many other countries?

As many people stated when the Iranian deal was being formulated and Israeli MK Michael Oren wrote on October 2, 2017 “The Iran Nuclear Deal Isn’t Worth Saving,” the problem lies with Iran itself. The country is a leading state sponsor of global terrorism. It is a dangerous destabilizing force, backing corrupt regimes and terrorist organizations throughout the Middle East. Many countries correctly concluded that Iran is a bad actor that must be restricted from having weapons of mass destruction. It follows the logic of keeping guns out of the hands of felons by a factor of 7 billion.

The current Islamic Republic of Iran is unfit to handle nuclear weapons or even possess nuclear power. It must be satisfied with a conventional arsenal to protect itself and conventional sources of electricity until it can demonstate that it can be trusted with greater power.

Palestinian Arabs’ Quest for an Independent State

In 1975, the United Nations passed General Assembly Resolution 3376 which created the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People (CEIRPP). Since 1977, the UN has celebrated on every November 29 the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, which echoed the CEIRPP call for “the right to self-determination without external interference, the right to national independence and sovereignty, and the right to return to their homes and property from which they had been displaced.

But the Palestinian Arabs have themselves undermined these “inalienable rights” based on their actions to date.

No “right to return to their homes and property from which they had been displaced.” UN Resolution 194 specifically stated that “refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so.” However, the millions of Palestinians who want “to return to their homes” are not refugees, but descendants of internally displaced people. Further, the various wars, intifadas and stabbing and car ramming attacks prove that the Palestinian Arabs have no intention of living in peace with Jews in the region.

No “right to national independence and sovereignty.” While people can appreciate the desire of people to self-determination and being citizens of a country, that does not equate to people having a distinct country of their own. Many Arabs are now citizens of Israel, accounting for 20% of the country. Millions of Arabs have Jordanian citizenship, many having moved to Jordan from the West Bank. Millions of Arabs east of the Green Line (EGL)/ Judea and Samaria/ West Bank had Jordanian citizenship from 1954 to 1988, from when the Jordanians granted all non-Jews in the region citizenship until the Jordanian government rescinded it and any claim to EGL. The Arabs in Gaza were under Egyptian rule from 1948 to 1967.

The Palestinian Arabs have shown themselves unfit to have a country of their own based on a long list of actions.

  • Electing a Holocaust denier as President
  • Electing a terrorist group (Hamas) to the majority (58%) of parliament
  • Established laws calling for capital punishment for any Arab selling land to a Jew
  • Calling for a new country to be Jew-free
  • Denying the 3700 year history of Jews in the holy land
  • Almost a completely anti-Semitic populace (93% according to an ADL poll)
  • Using language such as “genocide” and “ethnic cleansing” against the Jewish people who just suffered that fate at the hands of Germany and Arab countries around the Middle East
  • Wars and intifadas, and the incitement to murder Jews from 1920 until today

l
logo of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine,
showing the entire Arab world invading Israel

[the Al Aqsa Martyr’s Brigade is part of the “moderate” Fatah party and features a logo with guns over the Dome of the Rock on Jerusalem’s Temple Mount. New rules by WordPress prevent it being inserted here.]

Like Iran’s pursuit of nuclear power and a convicted felon’s desire to purchase a gun, granting Palestinian Arabs a sovereign country would be a dangerous and alarming action. That countries would even consider pursuing such course while the Palestinian Authority works to bring Hamas into a unity government, would be akin to handing an automatic weapon to a serial domestic abuser who bought the apartment next door to his ex-wife.

The Palestinian Arabs can achieve their “inalienable right” to become citizens of either Israel, Jordan or Egypt. They are still a very long way of earning the right to sovereignty.

 


Related First.One.Through articles:

The Gap between Fairness and Safety: WMDs in Iraq and Iran

Half Standards: Gun Control and the Iranian Nuclear Weapons Deal

Is the Iran Deal a Domestic Matter (NY Times) or an International Matter (Wall Street Journal)

What do you Recognize in the Palestinians?

Extreme and Mainstream. Germany 1933; West Bank & Gaza Today

Palestinian Jews and a Judenrein Palestine

The Palestinians aren’t “Resorting to Violence”; They are Murdering and Waging War

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