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China none too happy as Trump sells $1.4 billion worth of arms to Taiwan

For decades, U.S. presidents of both parties have given lip service to the idea that we support Taiwan’s security, as we are legally obligated to do. Actual concrete action has been another matter, as these same presidents have been nervous about offending the communist Chinese. As a result, Taiwan has had to make do with aging ships, submarines and munitions while the ever-present threat of a Chinese attack looms.

President Trump is taking a decidedly difference stance toward China, starting with the fact that he expects much more than China has delivered in terms of reining in their buddy Bowl Cut Jr. and North Korea. He also believes in a more general sense that if China is going to act in a manner contrary to America’s strategic interests, it should be treated like a country that does that.

This is good news for Taiwan, which is about to receive $1.4 billion worth of arms upgrades from the United States, despite the predictable protests from Shanghai:

By Dan Calabrese - Monday, July 3, 2017 - Full Story

Trump must reject Abbas claims at UN on size of Palestine

President Trump cannot begin to resolve the Jewish-Arab conflict unless he first rejects the claims made by Mahmoud Abbas at the United Nations in 2012 and 2013 concerning the territorial dimensions of former Palestine.

Abbas told the United Nations on 27 September 2012:

“The two-State solution, i.e. the State of Palestine coexisting alongside the State of Israel, represents the spirit and essence of the historic compromise embodied in the Oslo Declaration of Principles, the agreement signed 19 years ago between the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and the Government of Israel under the auspices of the United States of America on the White House Lawn, a compromise by which the Palestinian people accepted to establish their State on only 22% of the territory of historic Palestine for the sake of making peace.”

By David Singer - Monday, July 3, 2017 - Full Story

Not worth a Penny

Specifically, I’m talking about official “Bank of Somewhere” notes, redeemable for whatever, and so forth. The world of highfalutin financial systems seems to have found new high and low points.

Just a few years ago, the government of the sovereign state of Zimbabwe thought it could create money out of nothing. What difference does it make to simply add a few zeros here or there, as long as it’s “FREE?”

Wouldn’t you like to be a TRILLIONAIRE, owning a few of those pretty picture bank notes printed on real paper? Like the one from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, that minted plenty of 100 TRILLION (Zimbabwe) DOLLAR notes, a reverse side picture of one is nearby.

By Dr. Klaus L.E. Kaiser - Saturday, July 1, 2017 - Full Story

Germans pass law imposing fines on Facebook, Twitter etc. if they don’t delete ‘hate speech’

I think we forget sometimes as Americans that the First Amendment doesn’t cover the whole world. The American left may be attacking free speech in this country, but they don’t have much hope of succeeding at the moment, at least, given that we still have a slight conservative majority on the Supreme Court that’s willing to defend the Constitution (most of the time).

The rest of the world is an entirely different story, and that could present a problem for social media companies who understandably wish to operate on a global basis. And the problem is no longer just theoretical. Germany has just made it very real:

German lawmakers have passed a controversial law under which Facebook, Twitter, and other social media companies could face fines of up to €50 million ($57 million) for failing to remove hate speech. The Network Enforcement Act, commonly referred to as the “Facebook law,” was passed by the Bundestag, Germany’s parliamentary body, on Friday. It will go into effect in October.

By Dan Calabrese - Friday, June 30, 2017 - Full Story

United Nations Hosts Two-Day Anti-Israel Palestinian Forum at its Headquarters

The United Nations once again has displayed its anti-Israel bias by hosting what is called the “United Nations Forum to Mark Fifty Years of Occupation.”  The United Nations Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People has organized the two-day meeting. Representatives affiliated or working with two terrorist organizations - Hamas and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) - are taking part.

Palestinian representative Saeb Erekat told the Israel haters that “Hamas and the PFLP are not terrorist organizations.”  Erekat also said that the way to defeat ISIS is by ending the Israeli “occupation.” He added, “The Israeli government, headed by Mr. Benjamin Netanyahu, is trying to replace the two-state solution with one state, two systems, apartheid.”

Israel’s Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon responded to such nonsense, saying, “They have no shame. These are lies and incitement from those who are paying terrorists to kill innocent Israelis.”

By Joseph A. Klein - Friday, June 30, 2017 - Full Story

Venezuela now in total chaos: Police helicopter fires on Supreme Court, interior ministry

If I was Nicolas Maduro, I wouldn’t be concerning myself at this point with hanging on to power. I’d be concerning myself with how to not end up like Nicolae Caeucescu, dragged out into the streets by his finally liberated subjects and shot in the head.

When things get as bad as they’ve now gotten in Venezuela, there’s no way out of this for Maduro that results in his retaining power. Even if he could successfully mess with the country’s constitution to avoid elections and stay in power, he would only face even greater resistance from the populace, which is tired of not being able to get food, toilet paper and other basic necessities.

Hey! There’s that word: Resistance. The American left flatters itself with its own self-description. They don’t really resist the U.S. government even with Donald Trump at the head of it, because the fact of the matter is their life is pretty darn good here. You want to see real resistance? The situation in Caracas is beyond anything you can possibly imagine, and now it’s not even clear who’s attacking whom:

By Dan Calabrese - Wednesday, June 28, 2017 - Full Story

The IDF Exercises in Cyprus and Crete

The Israel Defense Forces recently completed a large military exercise on the island of Cyprus, and a smaller training exercise in Crete was held several months earlier. Although the commanders of the exercise did not refer to this specifically, the topographic outline of Cyprus is clearly similar to that of the Lebanese mountains, and in general, training in unfamiliar territory, and particularly when it resembles areas beyond the border where the troops may well have to operate, is highly important. The exercise presumably created tension with Turkey; in addition, the government heads of Israel, Cyprus, and Greece met earlier this month in Greece, in yet another trilateral meeting since the leaders of the three countries met in Nicosia a year ago to establish a new geopolitical bloc in the Eastern Mediterranean, partly as a counterweight to Turkey.

By INSS -- Gabi Siboni, Gal Perl Finkel- Wednesday, June 28, 2017 - Full Story

The Conservative Predicament in Iran

The results of the recent elections are the latest development in a line of defeats that Iran’s conservatives have suffered in recent years. The difficulty faced by the conservative right in its efforts to recruit the support of the Iranian public can be explained by the conservative failure to provide a relevant response to demands regarding economics and individual freedoms. The election results showed that it is not enough to scatter slogans or use social media to recruit public support. Yet as conservative elements continue to control the main centers of power, the prospects for change appear remote. Moreover, the challenges facing the conservative camp do not at this stage amount to a substantive threat to regime stability or even to the continuation of the conservative hegemony. However, adapting revolutionary ideology to the constraints of reality is the key to survival of the system.

Following a stormy election campaign, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani was reelected for a second term of office. Rouhani won 57 percent of the votes, while his main rival, the conservative cleric Ebrahim Raisi, received less than 39 percent of the vote. Rouhani’s sweeping victory in 23 out of the 31 provinces throughout Iran was particularly striking in view of the high voter turnout – about 73 percent, one of the highest rates ever recorded in presidential elections in Iran. In the country’s ongoing political struggle between the pragmatic/reformist camp, which seeks change, even if limited and gradual, and the conservative camp, which fears change and is determined to block it, Iranian citizens preferred the more moderate candidates. In the elections for local councils, which were held concurrently with the presidential elections, candidates for lists identified with the reformist camp also recorded impressive achievements. For the first time in 14 years, reformist candidates (including a record number of six women) won all 21 seats in Tehran’s city council. The reformists were also victorious in other central cities, including Isfahan, Shiraz, Karaj, Yazd, Tabriz, and even the holy city of Mashhad, the home of presidential candidate Raisi.

By INSS -- Raz Zimmt- Monday, June 26, 2017 - Full Story

Trump, Kushner, Greenblatt flirt with phantom Palestinian Authority

President Trump has made a poor start in attempting to broker an end to the Jewish-Arab conflict by initially engaging with the “Palestinian Authority”—an entity that no longer legally exists.

Trump’s White House communique on 21 June highlights his glaring tactical error:

“Senior Advisor to the President Jared Kushner, Assistant to the President and Special Representative for International Negotiations Jason Greenblatt, and United States Consul General in Jerusalem Donald Blome met today in Ramallah with President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority and his senior advisors.”

By David Singer - Monday, June 26, 2017 - Full Story

East-West-North-South: The Race for Syria after the Islamic State

The current race for control of territory in Syria now appears to be a competition between Iran and the United States, which have established two respective axes – with a vertical American (north-south) effort on the one hand, and a horizontal Iranian (east-west) effort on the other hand. In practice, this is another stage in the shaping of Syria in preparation for the day after the Islamic State. In the meantime, the country’s southwestern region, from Daraa to the Golan Heights, remains open for activity and influence by Israel and Jordan, which must begin taking action before it is too late. Contacts are apparently underway to formulate a joint Israeli-Jordanian-American strategy aimed at preventing Iranian influence and the presence of its proxies, especially Hezbollah and Shiite militias, in the southern Syria.

Increasing signs are pointing to the impending fall of the Islamic State in Syria, which has suffered a series of defeats in recent months. The territory in eastern Syria that will be freed of Islamic State control now constitutes a focus of the major struggle between the United States and Iran in Syria, as both are striving to seize the area. Early June marked the onset of the final phase of the US-led coalition’s offensive to conquer the city of Raqqa, the capital of the Islamic State in Syria, with a combined Kurdish-Arab (though predominantly Kurdish) ground force – the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) – and air support provided by the international coalition, including the United States, other Western countries, and Arab states. At the same time, Iran and its proxies have also started intensifying efforts aimed at shaping Syria the day after the fall of the Islamic State. Forces of the pro-Assad coalition are currently trying to expand their control in the Deir ez-Zor region and improve their access to Raqqa and the surrounding area, and also seize key positions along the Syrian-Iraqi border.

By INSS -- Udi Dekel- Monday, June 26, 2017 - Full Story

US pressure on Israel? No need to panic!

Can Israel afford to defy US presidential pressure to concede land, which is historically and militarily critical to the future of the Jewish State?

US presidential pressure has been an integral part of the US-Israel saga since 1948. However, in retrospect, US pressure on Israel has been based on erroneous assessments of the Middle East, failing to advance the cause of peace, as evidenced by the only two peace accords (between Israel and Egypt and Jordan), which were the result of direct Israeli initiatives, not US pressure.

In fact, US pressure on Israel has forced Arabs to outflank the US from the maximalist side, causing further setbacks to the peace process.

By Yoram Ettinger - Monday, June 26, 2017 - Full Story

How the Asbestos Hysteria Led to the Grenfell Tragedy

There was no single cause of the tragic 24-story Grenfell Tower conflagration in London. The British newspaper The Telegraph lists eight factors, including lack of dual staircases, lack of sprinklers both outside and inside, and sub-standard fire doors—none of which at this time appear to have violated the law. But nothing contributed more to the sheer speed of the spread, blocking both exits and preventing rescues, and hence the horrific death toll, than what’s called “cladding.” That’s a covering or coating on the structure.

According to The Telegraph, fire safety experts warned as much as 18 years ago that the cladding used on buildings such as Grenfell Tower—used to improve both energy efficiency and aesthetics—posed a deadly threat because it essentially turns a high-rise into a chimney, funneling the heat upwards. Why? Partly it’s “breathing space” between cladding panels allowing oxygen to enter and partly because the cladding was made of aluminum and . . . polyethylene. “Ethyl” means a petroleum byproduct. And while petroleum byproducts may be good for heating and cooling insulation, petroleum burns.

By Michael Fumento - Saturday, June 24, 2017 - Full Story

The New United States Policy against the Islamic State: Ramifications for Asymmetric Warfare

Are the recent US strikes against the Islamic State, as well Russia’s permissive policy on airstrikes in Syria that cause mass civilian casualties and extensive harm to civilian infrastructures, evidence of a change in international standards in the fight against terrorist organizations and sub-state actors? A related question is: do the rules of engagement that apply to powers such as the United States and Russia also apply to other states confronting terrorism, such as Israel? How should Israel prepare for its next confrontation against a sub-state actor such as Hamas or Hezbollah that operates in an urban environment while intentionally embedded in the civilian population?

In late May 2017, US Defense Secretary Gen. James Mattis announced a change in United States strategy in the war against the Islamic State, amounting to a transition from attrition to a concerted policy of annihilation. Mattis announced that the US intention is to prevent foreigners fighting in Islamic State ranks from surviving the battle and returning home or acting elsewhere, such as in North Africa, Europe, the Americas, and Asia. Mattis added that civilian casualties in the war against terrorism is “a fact of life,” but made it clear that US forces would continue to make great efforts to prevent civilian casualties, while taking the army’s needs into consideration. However, is already clear that since President Trump took office there has been an increase in civilian casualties in US attacks in Iraq and Syria against the Islamic State.

By INSS -- Liran Antebi, Udi Dekel- Wednesday, June 21, 2017 - Full Story

Watch a former US Special forces soldier run through ISIS gunfire to save a little civilian girl in

The old media loves to portray the U.S. military as uncaring warmongers running roughshod over the globe.  To them, the United States is always the problem, never the solution.  The truth is that members of the American Armed Forces have a long history of trying to assist local civilians during engagements, and lending aid and comfort is almost always one of their primary goals.

Even after their service is up, many of them become aid workers - dedicating themselves to the effort to help those in harm’s way. You’d never know it if you only listen to the left.

So, when we have a piece of footage like this, we like to make sure you see it. On the streets of Mosul, ISIS snipers had killed multiple civilians in the middle of a wide street. That’s when ex-Green Beret David Eubank saw a little girl moving among the victims.

By Robert Laurie - Monday, June 19, 2017 - Full Story

Deceiving Trump and Tillerson has consequences for Abbas

President Trump and Secretary of State Tillerson are quickly learning that tough talk is needed to rein in Mahmoud Abbas—who has deceived Trump and Tillerson twice in the last month.

  1. Abbas sweet-talked Trump at the White House on 3 May claiming:

“we are raising our youth, our children, our grandchildren on a culture of peace.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu quickly responded on 4 May:

“I heard President Abbas yesterday say that Palestinians teach their children peace. That’s unfortunately not true. They name their schools after mass murders of Israelis and they pay terrorists,”

By David Singer - Monday, June 19, 2017 - Full Story

Defending Israel and Fighting Anti-Semitism - My Ariel Avrech Memorial Lecture

I was honored and privileged to be asked by Robert Avrech of Seraphic Secret to undertake the Ariel Avrech Memorial Lecture in memory of his son Ariel, who passed away at an early age.

Robert and Karen are incredible people who have managed to transmute their loss into a search for meaning. And it was a great responsibility to be part of that and to follow speakers like David Horowitz and Larry Elder who have delivered the lecture in the past. It was also a pleasure to meet up with fellow bloggers from Bookworm Room and Rob from Joshuapundit, as well as having colleague Mark Tapson and Kyle Kyllan, producer of The Enemies Within. And thank you also to those who came from as far away as Marin County and Orange County. I was happy to meet everyone and privileged to be able to participate in this event.

The following is the text of my remarks. You can see the video above. My speech begin after opening remarks by Robert, Karen and a friend of Ariel’s who shared some beautiful memories of him with us.

By Daniel Greenfield - Monday, June 19, 2017 - Full Story

Canadian Beauty Queen to Address U.N. Rights Council Today on China’s Persecution of Falun Gong

GENEVA— Chinese-Canadian human rights activist, actress and beauty queen Anastasia Lin will testify before the United Nations Human Rights Council this afternoon in Geneva. To request an interview, send email to: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Lin was famously barred from China when she went to represent Canada at the 2015 Miss World competition. Her struggle was profiled in the New York Times and reported worldwide.

Today, Lin’s testimony will address the situation of human rights in China, whose government was recently reelected to the 47-nation body.

Lin was invited to speak by the independent non-governmental human rights group UN Watch

Israel’s economy - persistent defiance of conventional wisdom

In defiance of the jagged cutting edge of the Middle East, the inherent regional unpredictability, uncertainty, instability, violence, brutal Islamic intolerance of the “infidel” and the lack of formal diplomatic relations with most of its neighbors, Israel has displayed a unique level of resilience, steadfastness, stability and creativity.

By Yoram Ettinger - Thursday, June 15, 2017 - Full Story

Palestinian official donates playroom to a Haifa hospital

Every year, an estimated 1,200 children and adults residents of the Palestinian Authority (PA) territories come to Rambam Health Care Campus in Haifa for medical treatment.

A few months ago, “M,” a senior figure in the PA who wishes to conceal his identity, was treated for cancer at Rambam. While hospitalized, he met many patients and their families from the PA areas, and began to take particular interest in the unique needs of hospitalized children.

“When I arrived at Rambam, I saw a medical team that treats its patients with dedication, but I also saw the suffering of sick children,” said M. “Palestinian children, Israelis, Syrians, and children from other countries are being treated at Rambam for serious illnesses and are in need of all the help they can get.”

After completing a round of treatment, he decided to donate tens of thousands of shekels to establish a playroom for children undergoing radiation therapy at Rambam’s new Joseph Fishman Oncology Center.—More…

By ISRAEL21c - Wednesday, June 14, 2017 - Full Story

UN Secretary General Defends UN Agency that Teaches One Palestine “River to Sea”

The spokesperson for United Nations Secretary General António Guterres issued a statement on Monday on behalf of the Secretary General strongly defending the work of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA). The statement defended UNRWA against what the Secretary General considered to be unfair criticism. The statement expressed the Secretary General’s “support for UNRWA and his admiration for the role it plays in delivering essential services and protecting the rights of millions of Palestine refugees across the Middle East.”

The Secretary General, through his spokesperson, bestowed special praise for UNRWA’s supposed contributions to the education of Palestinian children. It “provides education for half a million refugee girls and boys, teaching them human rights and tolerance,” the Secretary General spokesperson’s statement said.

By Joseph A. Klein - Wednesday, June 14, 2017 - Full Story