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Friday, October 31, 2014

Phony Op-Ed in Wall Street Journal




Maher Hathout and Salam al Marayati are two of the leading Muslim figures in America. Al Marayati is the director of the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) and Hathout is a senior advisor of MPAC. Both have been featured on this site many times. In this op-ed in the Wall Street Journal they dish out more pablum to unsuspecting non-Muslims. While attempting to convince the reader that the horrors being perpetrated across the Islamic world are in contravention of Islam, they argue that American Muslims can be a force for reform back in their countries of origin.

Let Islamic Reform Start in America


We must stop looking to the Middle East, where regressive religion and authoritarianism reign.

By  Salam Al-Marayati and Maher Hathout           
Oct. 30, 2014           
‘Muslim communities in the West,” wrote Graham Fuller and Ian Lesser in 1995 (“The Geopolitics of Islam and the West”), “are more likely to exert influence on their countries and cultures of origin rather than receive influences from them; over time they may have a substantive effect on the perceptions of secularization and minority rights in the Middle East.”

This shift—from the American Muslim community being perceived as foreign and an extension of the Middle East and South Asia to American Muslims instead influencing the East—is the direction in which Muslims are heading. Rampant authoritarianism in the Muslim world and the regression of Muslim religious establishments funded by the same autocratic governments currently make Islamic reform unlikely in the region.

American Muslims can significantly contribute to the revival of Islam and restore human dignity as a central principle of the faith. From despotic regimes to religious extremism, authoritarianism in the Middle East and South Asia has devastated modern Islamic thought over the last few centuries. American Muslims have the freedom and the intellectual capacity to create positive change for Islamic reform.


There are 1.5 billion Muslims in the world, and their religion needs to be relevant for all of their lives. All religions and man-made philosophies go through reform and renewal. We Muslims must liberate ourselves from the shackles of dogmatic traditions such as sectarianism, tribalism, chauvinism and theocracy, all of which contradict Islamic ethics based in the Quran and the authenticated traditions of the Prophet Mohammed.

The areas that need immediate attention for Islamic reform are: promoting good governance; protecting the rights of religious minorities and women; and marginalizing the ideology of compulsion. There was more discourse on the penal code and jurisprudence centuries ago, at the peak of Islamic civilization, when leaders focused on the spirit of the Islamic law, rather than on the absolute letter of the law.

For example, within two decades after the Quranic revelation was complete in 632, the punishment for theft was suspended by Omar ibn al Khattab, the second successor to the Prophet, when the economy deteriorated and poverty was endemic. In this case, along with many others, a leader suspended a conditional Quranic instruction because of new circumstances. That thinking is needed now more than ever.

As is well known, the human rights of women and religious minorities are violated in many Muslim countries. Communities that don’t align with the ideology of the ruling power live in inhumane and oppressive conditions. In 2002 religious police in Saudi Arabia prevented girls from escaping a burning school in Mecca and 15 female students died. These men, members of the Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice, would not allow the girls to escape the building because their head scarves were not completely covering their hair.

This meant a rule trumped the protection of life, one of the five goals of Islamic law, the others being freedom of expression, freedom of religion, rights of family, and rights of property. The five goals are called the Maqaasid of Islamic law and are unanimously accepted by Islamic jurists. The Maqaasid needs to be given new life, and that can only happen in an environment of freedom and futuristic thinking. There is no Islamic ethics or morality achieved by religious police.

This Saudi religious police force, similar to those in Iran and throughout South Asia, is a bastardization of a very important Islamic concept—Maslaha, or public interest. The verse in the Quran related to Maslaha refers to the promotion of social benefit, defined by the Maqaasid and known by the people as human decency, and the prevention of public harm. Religious policing is rooted in the ideology of compulsion. It is a distortion of that valuable understanding of public interest in any nation’s jurisprudence or executive authority.

American Muslims have looked to the Middle East for religious authority, for spiritual direction and, at times, for political priorities. We must end this practice by declaring that any country or group claiming to be Islamic must uphold the most important principle in Islam, protecting life rather than destroying it.

Any country that kills its own people, persecutes religious minorities and subjugates women is anathema to American Muslims. They can call themselves angels, but they cannot camouflage their evil under a religious veneer. Islam liberated us from the shackles of religious tyranny, and we will struggle to liberate ourselves by declaring our independence from the tyrants and clerics who have usurped authority and religion in claiming sovereignty over Muslims world-wide.

Mr. Al-Marayati is president and Dr. Hathout is senior adviser of the Muslim Public Affairs Council.


http://online.wsj.com/articles/salam-al-marayati-and-maher-hathout-let-islamic-reform-start-in-america-1414713552

First of all, when these two gentlemen claim that American Muslims can be a force for reform, they should begin putting their own house in order. Both of them are recipients of the so-called Freedom Letter sent in 2009 and 2012 by Former Muslims United to the top 200 Muslim leaders in the US asking them to sign the Freedom Pledge, a simple statement that American apostates from Islam should not be harmed. To date neither has signed it. In fact, only rwo of the recipients have signed it.

In June 2012,  Hathout spoke at St John's Episcopal Church in Los Angeles. When an audience member asked him if he would sign the aforementioned letter, he said he had never received it. I then walked to the table where he was sitting and placed it in front of him. It was a copy of the letter that had been addressed specifically to him. He tossed it aside then said he would read the letter and sign it if it was not insulting to Islam. You can view the video of that exchange here.

In December 2012, I encountered Hathout again at the annual MPAC convention at the All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena. I asked him if he had ever signed the letter. He said that he would not because he did not believe in a death penalty for apostasy in Islam and nobody was going to dictate to him what to sign.

At that same conference, I asked Marayati the same question. He repeated the line about there being no death penalty in Islam  for apostasy and that was why he never signed it. I also provided him with a copy of the letter that had been addressed to him. Both exchanges are described in the above link.

If these gentlemen were really serious about American Muslims leading the way for reform in Islam, they could have used the opportunity to sign the Freedom Pledge. They chose not to. That says to me that their words in the above editorial ring hollow.

Eric Holder's Inappropriate Comments on Ferguson




Attorney General Eric Holder has once (twice, actually) again demonstrated why he has no business being attorney general or occupying any other government position.

Last week, he was responding to leaks coming out of the grand jury in St Louis investigating the shooting of Michael Brown by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson. The leak tended to indicate that the case was going in Officer Wilson's favor. Holder didn't like that. Even though it is not a federal grand jury, he spoke out and said that people need to shut up.

True enough, grand jury information is not supposed to be divulged, but it is not the DOJ's grand jury. It is Holder who should have shut up.

Now this week Holder gives an interview on Wednesday in which he says that it is "pretty clear" that "wholesale changes" need to be made in the Ferguson Police Department. Of course, he added that since the separate DOJ  investigation is still underway he can't say exactly what changes.

Really?

Could it be that if Officer Wilson is exonerated, that no changes are necessary? Police Chief Thomas Jackson has quickly and rightfully objected to Holder's pre-judging of the facts. It is no secret that Holder and his henchmen in DOJ want the chief to resign.

Indeed, Holder's comments in both instances are inappropriate and irresponsible-not worthy of an attorney, let alone the US attorney general.  He is not in charge of the St Louis County grand jury, and he is pre-judging the Ferguson Police Department before all the facts are in.

If there is any agency where wholesale changes are necessary it is the current Justice Department, which has been thoroughly politicized and corrupted under Eric Holder.


John Kerry Shows His Idiocy Once Again

Hat tip CNS News

"The response to Islamist extremism, which “exploits a legitimate and beautiful religion,” must include offering alternatives to young people who lack opportunities and “feel oppressed,” Secretary of State John Kerry said Tuesday."




John Heinz Kerry has once more illustrated that not only is he ignorant of the Middle East, he is also ignorant about Islam.

http://cnsnews.com/news/article/patrick-goodenough/kerry-extremism-exploits-beautiful-religion



“We’re also going to win it with better alternatives for a whole bunch of young people who today live in places where they feel oppressed, where they don’t have a lot of opportunity, there’s not enough education, they don’t have jobs,” he said. “But they know what the rest of the world has because they all have smart phones, they all have mobile devices, and they’re all seeing what’s going on and they trade thoughts.”


Old Horse Face forgets about the thousands of ISIS fighters who traveled from Europe, Australia, Canada and the US to join the Islamic jihad. They had education at their fingertips and smart phones in their hands. Kerry is still peddling the line that extremism is born of poverty. He forgets that Usama bin Laden was the heir to a multi-million dollar construction firm in Saudi Arabia. His successor, Aymam al Zawahiri, is an educated man, and the leader of ISIS, Abu Bakr al Baghdadi, has a PhD in Islamic studies. Rich man, poor man. They have both joined the Islamic jihad, John-John.



And then there was this gem:

“And so we have to push back. We’re not going to win this exclusively through our efforts on the ground in this coalition with kinetic efforts,” he said, referring to the U.S.-led coalition’s military operations against the jihadist group. “We’re going to win this with ideas.”



(Amazing resemblance)

Ideas!??! What ideas? It's not like this administration is brimming over with ideas. And what "kinetic efforts" on the ground is he referring to? He must be referring to the heroic Kurds going it alone in Kobani aided by German and Dutch biker gangs, be jeezus! We ourselves are not doing anything on the ground.

How's this for an idea, John-John? Let's offer refuge to the last remaining Christians in the Middle East, get the hell out of there, become energy self sufficient, start supporting Israel again, and let those Arabs kill each other to their hearts' content?



"That's too simplistic, Fousesquawk."

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Clueless in Seattle

Hat tip The Mike Report


"Just think, Bro. Forty years from now we'll be protesting against Israel."


If you want to see the end result of all those hippies back in the 60s who were stoned on acid, look no farther than this post from my friend Mike of the Mike Report. He filmed a demonstration in Seattle by a group of burned out 60s types who have found new meaning to their lives in protesting against Israel. They showed up to protest a shipping company that is doing business with Israel. Mike got some humorous video.

http://mikereport.wordpress.com/2014/10/29/bds-mob-threatens-local-businesses/#comment-2145

Bill Maher Update at Berkeley

Hat tip Daily Californian


It's getting interesting at UC Berkeley (When isn't it?). The student group that had invited Bill Maher to speak at its commencement bowed to pressure and disinvited him. However, Chancellor Nicholas Dirks refused to accept the "disinvite" and said that Maher will speak. His statement is linked in the Daily Californian article.

http://www.dailycal.org/2014/10/29/administration-students-clash-bill-maher-commencement-invitation/

Way to go, Chancellor Dirks.

University of Virginia Panel on ISIS

Hat tip Campus Watch and Cavalier Daily
nsisiswomenpanelmbronfin010
-Cavalier Daily

"Having a clothes drive would really help."


There was a panel discussion at the University of Virginia the other day, and the topic was ISIS and their crimes against women. Here is the blurb from the UVA campus paper.

 On the one hand, I'm glad somebody in academia is talking about the horrible things that ISIS is doing to women (and men). It should be pointed out that Esfandiari, was a prisoner for several months in 2007 in Teheran's notorious Evin prison on trumped up charges.

On the other hand, did anybody mention the word, "Islam"? Apparently not, so if that was the case, the audience didn't learn much about why this is happening and what ISIS considers its motivation for slaughtering so many people.

And there was this gem:


"To prevent such an outcome, there will need to be greater direct intervention by the West, Nicholson said. There also need to be greater efforts to “protect and develop” the foundations of democracy and the principles of private ownership and property."



I would say the clothes drive has more chance of success.

* In the interest of full disclosure, I received a masters degree from UVA in 1993 when I was 48 years old.

And what did I major in, you ask?

You don't wanna know.


Sherman Jackson Takes his Sharia Propaganda to University of Tennessee

Hat tip Campus Watch






Professor Sherman Jackson of the University of Southern California and a convert to Islam, took his propaganda show to the University of Tennessee this week where he argued that sharia law is compatible with the US Constitution. Here is the unquestioning  report in the UT school newspaper, the Daily Beacon (which has also been posted on Campus Watch).

Of course, this is not the first time that Jackson has tried to sell this lemon to an unsuspecting public. In 2012, I watched him perform with several others in a sharia workshop at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, where he had a curious answer to my question about Muslim persecution of non-Muslims. He called it a "false criteria".

If anyone in the UT audience asked Jackson about hudud sharia, the punishment portion that deals with Crimes Against God, the student paper article does not report it. Hudud sharia mandates death for apostates, blasphemers, adulterers and homosexuals. Perfectly compatible with the US Constitition, mind you.

The fact is that when a knowledgeable person raises these issues, watch the Dance of Evasion begin. That is why these Islamic propaganda events are almost always structured so as to restrict questioning and eliminate follow ups by people who can destroy the lame talking points. Unfortunately, college students generally don't have the experience to be able to scratch beneath the talking points of these polished propagandists. That is why we need to attend these events. We can also get our views into the campus newspapers, which I will attempt to do with the Daily Beacon.

If they'll print it.

Update:

Here it is:

To whom it may concern,

I would like to submit the below as a letter to the editor for consideration for publication in your paper.

Thank you

Gary Fouse
Adjunct teacher
Univ of Calif at Irvine Ext.

"I can't help but wonder if anyone in the audience asked Professor Sherman Jackson during his appearance about Hudud Sharia. That is the part of sharia law that outlines punishments for "Crimes Against God". Under Hudud Sharia, the death penalty is mandated for apostasy, blasphemy, adultery and homosexuality. This is affirmed by virtually every leading school of Islamic thought in the world. How  is that compatible with the US Constitution?

In 2012, I saw Jackson speak at a sharia workshop at the Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. When I asked his panel about all the persecution of non-Muslims happening around the Islamic world, and why Muslims were not condemning it. he dismissed it as a "false criteria". That can be viewed at the below link.

http://garyfouse.blogspot.com/2012/04/shariah-workshop-at-loyola-marymount.html

Presentations like Jackson's should be accompanied by hard questions during the q and a with appropriate follow up. It appears that was lacking in this event."

Gary Fouse
Adj teacher
Univ of Calif at Irvine Ext.



Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Jewish Federations Invite Questionable Speakers to National Convention

Leave it to the Jewish Federations to invite Joe Biden, Andrea Mitchell and Elena Kagan to their annual convention.


http://www.jta.org/2014/10/28/news-opinion/united-states/vice-president-joe-biden-to-address-jewish-federations-general-assembly#.VE_bb-UQdrc.gmail

At this point, I will quote the words of LA-based writer, Janet Levy to describe the Federation's choice of speakers.

"The Jewish Federation invited VP Joe Biden to address their General Assembly meeting in Washington, D.C.  Biden, who recently referred to unscrupulous bankers who prey on the military as “shylocks” and was quick to blame Israel for “undermining trust” for building housing units in East Jerusalem (NOT firing missiles or blowing themselves up!), will headline the event.

Another invited speaker is Andrea Mitchell, who during the recent defensive war against Hamas and Fatah in Gaza, waxed sympathetic for Palestinian civilians, especially children, and wondered aloud (on national TV) if Israel was “losing its soul.”  Mitchell also voiced a knee-jerk but false observation (without substantiation) that the majority of civilian deaths during the war were caused by Israel.  

Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan, who idolizes activist judge Aaharon Barak as her “judicial hero,” will participate in the Jewish Federation’s General Assembly meeting as well.

The Jewish Federation is the largest Jewish organization in North America comprising 157 Federations and 300 Network communities.  Between 30-50% of Jewish households in the U.S. contribute to JFed, which raises and distributes more than $3 billion annually.

The Federation has supported BDS organizations and has invited several of them to participate in the “Celebrate Israel” parade in New York.  JFed has promoted and helped finance a program that sends Jewish, Christian and Muslim college students to Israel to meet with Hamas, Hezbollah and Muslim Brotherhood operatives and indoctrinate them into believing that Israel is an apartheid, Nazi-like state that violates the rights of Arab-Palestinians and steals their land and water.  (On one such trip, students met with Hamas operative, Aziz Duwaik, who was twice arrested (and served jail time) by Israeli Defense Forces, once in connection to the kidnapping of Gilad Shalit. 

The Jewish Federation did not participate in the recent protests of the Klinghoffer Opera at the Met in New York City."

Janet Levy,
Los Angeles
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
That's quite a record for the Jewish Federation. Well, I guess it's better than Jewish Voice for Peace, but pretty much on the level of J-Street, that bunch that calls itself pro-Israel but supports just about every Palestinian talking point.

I have an idea: Why don't they invite that anonymous source in the White House to speak-the one who called Bibi Netanyahu a coward?


Two Dead Cops in Sacramento Because We Will Not Secure Our Borders

This post first appeared in Eagle Rising.


From illegal immigration to drug smuggling to border violence to Middle Eastern terrorists coming up through Mexico to  the recent flood of unaccompanied Central American children to the Ebola virus. For years now we have been talking ourselves blue in the face over our government's refusal to secure our borders. Now this (as if it were the first): This past weekend two police officers in the Sacramento area were murdered, one other officer wounded, and a motorist shot in the face all by an illegal immigrant. As if that's not bad enough, this same man had been previously deported twice.

Nor is this the first case of a criminal illegal alien who had gone through our justice system committing murder in California. In 2008, Jamiel Shaw, a high school football star, whose mother was serving in the military overseas, was murdered in Los Angeles for no reason by an illegal immigrant gang member who had just been released from jail-without ICE being notified. The same year in San Francisco, another illegal immigrant gang member shot and killed a father and his two sons in some kind of road rage incident. Again, the  killer had recently been let out of jail without ICE being notified. He is now serving life in prison. The then San Francisco DA, ultra-liberal Kamala Harris, was famous for consistently refusing to pursue the death penalty for any and all cases in her jurisdiction. She is now California's attorney general, is running for re-election, and is rumored to
be considered as a replacement for Eric Holder or a spot on the US Supreme Court.

But what is the problem in California? Both San Francisco and Los Angeles are so-called sanctuary cities, where local police will not cooperate with the feds in getting illegal alien gang members and other criminals off the streets and out of the country. The current policy in most California cities is that when an illegal alien criminal is set to be released, the jails will not honor any holds placed by the feds, who instead have to be right there to take the defendant into custody as soon as he is released. Sanctuary policies are fully supported by Governor Jerry Brown.

This is not the way law enforcement is supposed to work. Stopping crime is supposed to be a joint effort at the federal, state and local levels. Ideally, ICE and local police should be working hand-in-hand to identify illegal alien criminals in the community sharing their intelligence and resources to rid the community of these criminals who are not even legally in the country. When I was a DEA agent working in Los Angeles in the late 1970s and early 1980s, our task force group consisted of DEA, Immigration and LAPD officers who worked as a team. It was a sound tactic and worked quite well.

I suspect some readers will conclude that I have something against immigrants in general or Hispanics in general. Far be the case. My wife is a Mexican immigrant (legal). I am very pro-immigrant as long as people come legally, obey our laws, and assimilate. I also well understand why millions of Mexicans come to this country because of the lack of opportunities in Mexico, which is a topic for another discussion. However, the plain fact is that no country can tolerate the presence of millions of people in the country illegally. Aside from the otherwise honest ones who are working, there is also a certain percentage who are criminals, and we must consider them as our top priority.

Yet, in spite of all common sense and in spite of all the horror stories, until we get a government that is serious about securing our borders, providing strong disincentives for local sanctuary policies (for example funding and other punitive measures), and getting rid of the foreign criminal elements, we will continue to suffer more outrages like the ones I have illustrated just in the state of California-to say nothing of the other 49 states.


Sweden's Willful Occupation Continues

Hat tip Jihad Watch


"All aboard!"

The Swedish ship Vasa


As pointed out over and over again at this site, Sweden is a country that has capitulated to militant Muslim immigrants who continue to arrive in large numbers and do nothing but increase the country's crime rate and welfare rolls. Sweden has invited its own occupation. Jihad Watch has the report from a Danish source.

http://www.jihadwatch.org/2014/10/sweden-police-point-out-55-muslim-dominated-areas-where-criminals-have-taken-control-of-the-area

When your cops are scared of your immigrants, it's a sign that maybe-just maybe- your immigration policies are out of whack.

UC Berkeley in a Tither Over Bill Maher as Commencement Speaker

Hat tip Daily Californian

“It’s not an issue of freedom of speech, it’s a matter of campus climate,” Navid said. “The First Amendment gives him the right to speak his mind, but it doesn’t give him the right to speak at such an elevated platform as the commencement. That’s a privilege his racist and bigoted remarks don’t give him.”
-Marium Navid


In case you didn't know, Bill Maher is scheduled to be the commencement speaker at UC Berkeley. In the wake of his recent comments about Islam on his show, that has some folks in an uproar, specifically Muslim students. They want him dis-invited.

http://www.dailycal.org/2014/10/26/students-spring-opposition-bill-maher-announced-keynote-speaker/

As I have said before when I posted the original story of Maher's debate with Ben Affleck, I think Maher is a jerk. It is a mystery to me why anybody would want this guy as a commencement speaker. I mean is he the best they can do? Having said that, his critics must now challenge the truthfulness or falsity of what he said. There is now a larger issue at stake here. In addition, I would ask where all these people were when Maher was bashing Christians as he has done for years.

At any rate, I am copying my comment to the above reader thread.


“It’s not an issue of freedom of speech, it’s a matter of campus climate,” Navid said. “The First Amendment gives him the right to speak his mind, but it doesn’t give him the right to speak at such an elevated platform as the commencement. That’s a privilege his racist and bigoted remarks don’t give him.”

"And who decides that, Marium Navid?

Where were all the objections to Bill Maher when he was bashing Christians as he has done for years?

In fact, where were all the objections in the past years of anti-Israeli events on UC campuses in which Jews have been insulted by speakers? Has the UCB Muslim Student Association ever invited Amir Abdel Malik Ali to speak on campus? The MSU at UC Irvine, where I teach has invited him many times. He regularly takes names out of a hat and calls them "Zionist Jews", a term he spits out with contempt.

Bill Maher is a jerk in my view, but he pales in comparison to some of the speakers who regularly appear on UC campuses and bash Jews."

Gary Fouse
Adj teacher
UCI Ext
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

(I always sign my name.)

Benjamin Netanyahu's Response to the Anonymous White House Official

A diplomatic row is brewing over an anonymous White House official who referred to Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as "chickensh--". Below courtesy of Arutz Sheva and Frontpage Magazine is Netanyahu's response before the Israeli Knesset.



I can't wait to learn the identity of this anonymous individual who called Netanyahu, a war veteran whose own brother was killed while leading the raid on Entebbe, a coward. I would be willing to wager that this anonymous person has never worn the uniform of his country.

Hillary Clinton "Corrects the Record"

Hat tip Buzz Feed





A new political term has been born.

"Shorthanded".

“I short-handed this point the other day, so let me be absolutely clear about what I’ve been saying for a couple of decades.”
“Our economy grows when businesses and entrepreneurs create good-paying jobs here in America and workers and families are empowered to build from the bottom up and the middle out — not when we hand out tax breaks for corporations that outsource jobs or stash their profits overseas.”

That's what Hillary Clinton explained to an audience after several days of furor over her preposterous statement, "'Don't let anybody tell you that corporations and businesses create jobs." 

http://www.buzzfeed.com/rubycramer/hillary-clinton-corrects-fumbled-jobs-line

Hillarious.

Sorry, Hillaria. There is no walking this back. Your words were clear. This attempt at "clarification" doesn't hold water.

Hijinks at UC San Diego Center Around Deadbeat Cafe named After Che Guevara

Hat tip Campus Reform

“The Che Cafe Collective doesn’t mourn, it organizes,” the event description reads.





Those who know a thing or two about history know that when Castro took over Cuba, Che Guevara (an Argentine, no less) was in charge of the kangaroo courts that executed hundreds of supporters of the ousted Batista regime. In fact, the "trials" barely lasted 5 minutes each as the "convicted" defendants were marched out the back door to the firing squad.

Those who don't know a thing or two about history today wear t-shirts with Che's face emblazoned across the front-or name cafes after him on the UC San Diego campus-cafes that fail to pay rent no less.

http://www.campusreform.org/?ID=6010

Of course, we all know that Che met his end in Bolivia where he was killed by Bolivian security forces-for failing to pay his rent or some such thing.

The Latest White House Insult Against Israel

Hat tip John Speedie for audio


If you still think the Obama administration "has Israel's back", read this latest flap.

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014/10/29/white-house-tries-to-ease-flare-up-over-netanyahu-insults/

At this point, any administration claims that the President is a friend of Israel are laughable. Equally laughable is the White House official's reference to a  recent visit to the White House by Netanyahu. Sorry, but we have seen those visits in the past. Remember the time Obama told Netanyahu to "come up with something better and let him know when he did" as he marched upstairs to dinner? Then there was the time, Bibi took Obama to task in front of the press corps as he schooled him on why Israel would never compromise on its security. Surely Obama never forgot that. Just this week, we learned that the Israeli defense minister was denied a White House visit during his trip to Washington. He couldn't even meet with Susan Rice!

No doubt, the White House does, in fact, view Netanyahu as "chickensh--". He insists on defending his own country. How
chickensh-- is that?

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Anti-Israel Activists All Star Conference

The Islamic Shura Council of Southern California is advertising an anti-Israel conference in San Gabriel (Los Angeles) California at the Episcopal Church of Our Savior on November 8. It features an all-star line-up of despicable anti-Israel organizations including Jewish Voice for Peace and Kinder USA, the latter of which was singled out as a charity with connections to Islamic terror organizations according to a book published by Yale University Press.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/13DRa_yq3TV6gDciRFd7JaJSKETt9ALFYdOhVrFk3qZQ/viewform

CAIR certainly needs no introduction though I find it ironic that their Southern California director, Hussam Ayloush, told an interviewer last November at the annual CAIR convention that CAIR "doesn't get dragged into Middle Eastern affairs". That lie was uttered before Ayloush went ballistic on his interviewer for asking him whether CAIR would ever condemn Hamas.

Here is the background on Kinder USA:

Friends of Sabeel is an arm of the Presbyterian Church USA, whose leadership is actively anti-Israel. Sabeel is an NGO active in the Middle East on behalf of the Palestinian cause.

http://www.sabeel.org/

Jewish Voice for Peace, of course, has the most misleading name this side of the Democratic Republic of North Korea. They hate Israel with a passion and want to see it destroyed. They do not even believe in the right of free speech for those with whom they disagree, calling it "useless discourse". They are basically a bunch of unhinged anarchists.

American Muslims for Palestine is a creation of UC Berkeley professor Hatem Bazian, who also founded Students for Justice in Palestine. This bozo is basically a two-trick pony. When not speaking in public against Israel, he is complaining about Islamophobia. He is also the founder of the Islamophobia Research and Documentation Center at UC Berkeley, basically an enemies list with a building.

Shame on the Episcopal Church of Our Savior for hosting this lynch mob of an event, and shame for the Shura Council for advertising it.


SJP at University of Binghamton Document Reveals Plans to Disrupt Pro-Israel Campus Events

Hat tip AMCHA Initiative
 
I am posting below three documents I just received from my friends and colleagues at the AMCHA Initiative. It has come to light that the Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) at Binghamton University have published a Declaration of Principles and Strategies that have to do with their organizational goal of delegitimizing the Jewish state of Israel. One of their strategies, explicitly stated, is to disrupt pro-Israel events on campus, which would take away the free speech rights of the people concerned).  Below is the letter that AMCHA has sent to universities with SJP chapters as well as the Binghamton president in particular. There are links to the referenced document.
 
 
AMCHA REVEALS INTERNAL SJP DOC CALLING FOR ILLEGAL ACTION
15 Groups Call on 100 Presidents of Universities with SJP Chapters to Prevent Behavior and Protect Jewish Students

Santa Cruz, CA, Oct. 28, 2014 – Fifteen Jewish and education advocacy groups, today, wrote to the presidents of more than 100 universities with Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) chapters to warn them of an internal SJP document containing a strategy for disrupting pro-Israel student events, conduct subject to prosecution under state criminal laws. In 2010, 10 students were convicted for disrupting Israeli ambassador Michael Oren’s speech at the University of California, Irvine. 

The foundational document of the SJP group at Binghamton University (SUNY), entitled "Declaration of Principles and Strategies," describes itself as “a collection and elucidation of several resolutions and collective decisions formulated and approved by the membership of Binghamton University Students for Justice in Palestine.”

In the “With Regards to Tactics and Strategies Used to Counter Zionist Normalization” section, the document spells out a strategy for disrupting pro-Israel events.  According to the document, “…it was decided via general consensus that, depending on the attendance levels of individual SJP members at such events, the following tactics would be most appropriate...[If more than 6 SJP members are present, these tactics include] engaging in a non-violent disruption of the event in question." 

The disruption of on-campus events violates New York State law.  Sec. 240.20 of the New York Penal Law outlaws “disorderly conduct,” which includes “without lawful authority,…disturb(ing) any lawful assembly or meeting of persons.”  All U.S. states have similar laws restricting the disruption of public events if this same tactic were to be employed by other SJP chapters.

“The document is extremely troubling in that it outlines a clear strategy for targeting, ostracizing, harassing and silencing students…,” wrote the groups.  “…it advocates behavior consistent with ‘anti-Zionist normalization’ campaigns being waged by SJP groups across the country, whose explicit purpose, according to the Anti-Defamation League, is to delegitimize all pro-Israel perspectives and actively suppress their expression on college campuses.  These campaigns have resulted in dozens of Jewish and pro-Israel students’ events being disrupted and Jewish and pro-Israel students feeling harassed, intimidated, and stripped of their constitutionally-protected freedom of expression and association.”

The document also prohibits SJP leaders and members from collaborating with specifically-named Jewish and pro-Israel student organizations.  According to the groups, “…the SJP group’s a priori rejection of any interaction with Jewish and pro-Israel student groups – or with any other group that is deemed to have collaborated with them – bespeaks of prejudice, bigotry and a lack of tolerance and civility, behavior that should not be tolerated from a registered student group on any campus.”

Earlier this fall, many of these same groups wrote to more than 2,500 U.S. colleges and universities urging them to protect Jewish students on campus in light of rising antisemitism in America and abroad.  In particular, the letter raised concerns over SJP, which the signatories note has a history of “harassing and intimidating Jewish students.”  The letter cited several recent incidents, including one at Temple University in which a pro-Israel student was physically and verbally assaulted by SJP members, as well as SJP’s planting of anti-Israel mock eviction notices under students’ dorm rooms on multiple campuses.

Today’s letter and a letter to the president of Binghamton University are below.

The AMCHA Initiative is a non-profit organization, based in California, dedicated to investigating, documenting, educating about, and combating antisemitism at institutions of higher education in America.  AMCHA Initiative’s efforts are bolstered by a network of more than 5,000 members and supporters of the Jewish community -- including university alumni, parents and grandparents, rabbis, religious school principals and synagogue members -- who have joined together to speak in one voice to ensure the safety and well-being of Jewish students on college and university campuses across the country.   
 





Dear President,

Last month, you received a letter from 14 organizations informing you about some of the anti-Semitic harassment and intimidation tactics employed by the group Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP), and urging you to take adequate steps to ensure the safety of Jewish students on your campus.

As a follow-up to that letter, we would like to inform you of a troubling revelation about one particular SJP chapter that may be relevant to the safety and well-being of Jewish and pro-Israel students on your own campus.

A foundational document of the SJP group at Binghamton University, entitled "Declaration of Principles and Strategies,” recently came to our attention. The document is extremely troubling in that it outlines a clear strategy for targeting, ostracizing, harassing, and silencing students on campus who oppose the boycott of Israel or who support or simply attend a program or event with which the SJP disagrees.
 
In a section entitled "With Regards to SJP's Interaction with Zionist Student Organizations," the document prohibits SJP leaders and members from collaborating or cooperating with specifically-named Jewish and pro-Israel student organizations, as well as with any group that has “aided and abetted Zionist student organizations.” Although a student organization is certainly free to choose its partners for collaboration and cooperation, the SJP group's a priori rejection of any interaction with Jewish and pro-Israel student groups – or with any other group that is deemed to have “collaborated" with them – bespeaks of prejudice, bigotry, and a lack of tolerance and civility, behavior that should not be tolerated from a student group on any campus.
 
Far more troubling, however, is the section of the document entitled "With Regards to Tactics and Strategies Used to Counter Zionist Normalization," which spells out a strategy for not only protesting certain student events, but also for actually disrupting them, simply because the SJP disagrees with the views that might be expressed there.  In calling for the disruption of other student groups' events, the SJP group is advocating behavior that violates Binghamton’s Student Code of Conduct, and may well be inciting criminal conduct in violation of New York State law prohibiting the disturbance of a lawful meeting or event. 

We are bringing this document to your attention because it advocates behavior consistent with “anti-Zionist normalization” campaigns being waged by SJP groups across the country, whose explicit purpose, according to the Anti-Defamation League, is to delegitimize all pro-Israel perspectives and actively suppress their expression on college campuses.  These campaigns have resulted in dozens of Jewish and pro-Israel students’ events being disrupted, and Jewish and pro-Israel students feeling harassed, intimidated, and stripped of their constitutionally-protected freedom of expression and association.  (See HERE for a sample of Israel-related events that have been disrupted by SJP students on more than 20 U.S. campuses). 

Moreover, if members of the SJP orchestrated a disruption of a campus event, such conduct could subject them to prosecution and conviction under state criminal laws – which is precisely what happened to members of the anti-Israel student group at the University of California, Irvine after they carried out their plan to disrupt a speech by Israel’s then-ambassador to the U.S. 

We therefore urge you to carefully monitor the behavior of the SJP group on your campus and to ensure that its members' conduct conforms to university policy and the law, and that the group does not threaten or infringe on the rights of other members of your university community.


Sincerely,

Alpha Epsilon Pi Fraternity (AEPi)
AMCHA Initiative
American Association of Jewish Lawyers and Jurists
Americans for Peace and Tolerance
David Horowitz Freedom Center
Endowment for Middle East Truth (EMET)
Hasbara Fellowships
Institute for Black Solidarity with Israel 
National Conference on Jewish Affairs  
Proclaiming Justice to the Nations   
Scholars for Peace in the Middle East   
Simon Wiesenthal Center 
StandWithUs
The Lawfare Project
Zionist Organization of America



***********************************************


President Harvey G. Stenger
Binghamton University
State University of New York
4400 Vestal Parkway East
Binghamton, NY  13902


Dear President Stenger,

We represent 15 organizations with hundreds of thousands of members and supporters nationwide, who are deeply concerned for the safety and well-being of Jewish students on campuses across the country.  We have particular concerns about Jewish students on your campus, based on the marginalizing, intimidating and bigoted tactics that we have reason to believe may be used against them by Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP), a student group established at Binghamton University (BU) less than one year ago.

We were recently made aware of an on-line document entitled "Declaration of Principles and Strategies”.  The document purports to be "a collection and elucidation of several resolutions and collective decisions formulated and approved by the membership of Binghamton University Students for Justice in Palestine."  It outlines "principles and strategies" generally agreed upon by the BU SJP membership.

As a foundational document of a student group at your university, the "Declaration of Principles and Strategies" is extremely troubling. The SJP's document outlines a strategy for targeting, ostracizing, harassing, and silencing students on your campus who oppose the boycott of Israel or who support or simply attend a program or event with which the SJP disagrees. 

In a section entitled "With Regards to SJP's Interaction with Zionist Student Organizations," the document prohibits SJP leaders and members from collaborating or cooperating with eight specifically-named Jewish and pro-Israel student organizations.  Going further, the “Declaration” prohibits collaboration even with any group that has “aided and abetted Zionist student organizations.”  The SJP’s goal is crystal clear:  to single out Jewish and pro-Israel student groups, isolate them, and cut them off from other student groups in the university community.   

Although a student organization is certainly free to choose its partners for collaboration and cooperation, the BU SJP group's a priori rejection of any interaction with Jewish and pro-Israel student groups – or with any other groups that is deemed to have “collaborated" with them – bespeaks of prejudice, bigotry, and a lack of tolerance and civility, violating BU's commitment to being "an inclusive community within a framework of academic freedom and respect." 

Far more troubling, however, is the section of the document entitled "With Regards to Tactics and Strategies Used to Counter Zionist Normalization," which spells out  a strategy for not only protesting certain student events, but also  for actually disrupting them, simply because the SJP disagrees with the views that might be expressed there.  Particularly troubling is the go-ahead given to SJP members to employ any other tactic and strategy, provided that the tactic or strategy is “within the bounds of what is not widely considered to be legally reprehensible.”  One can only imagine what the SJP might deem acceptable and not “widely considered to be legally reprehensible.”
 
As you are well aware, in calling for the disruption of other student groups' on-campus events, the SJP is advocating behavior that violates BU's Student Code of Conduct, which repeatedly emphasizes BU’s objective to be “a richly diverse and inclusive community.”  (See http://www.binghamton.edu/student-handbook/rules.pdf.)  Consistent with that goal, the Code requires all members of the BU community to “conduct themselves lawfully, maturely and respectfully. . . . Conduct that interferes with or threatens the rights of others, either in or out of the classroom, or interferes with or prohibits the operation of the University, is not condoned.”

In addition, while acknowledging First Amendment freedoms, the Code rightly makes it clear that those freedoms cannot be exercised at the expense of the rights of others, noting that ”abusing the rights of any one person or group ultimately endangers the rights of all.”  Accordingly, the Code specifically prohibits “disorderly or disruptive conduct that interferes with the normal operations of the University or infringes on the rights of others” – exactly the kind of conduct that the SJP is apparently encouraging its members to engage in.

Besides encouraging behavior that violates the letter and spirit of BU’s Student Code of Conduct, the SJP may well be inciting criminal conduct in violation of New York State law.  Sec. 240.20 of the New York Penal Law outlaws “disorderly conduct,” which includes “without lawful authority, . . . disturb[ing] any lawful assembly or meeting of persons.” 

The SJP’s apparent plans at BU are already being carried out by this group on campuses across the country,  resulting in dozens of Jewish and pro-Israel students’ events being disrupted and causing these students to feel harassed and intimidated.  (See HERE for a sample of Israel-related events that have been disrupted by SJP students on more than 20 U.S. campuses.)  According to the Anti-Defamation League, the explicit purpose of the SJP’s “anti-Zionist normalization” campaigns is to delegitimize all pro-Israel perspectives and actively suppress their expression on college campuses. (See http://www.adl.org/israel-international/anti-israel-activity/c/anto-normalization-campaign.html). 

We urge you to review the SJP’s “Declaration of Principles and Strategies” and consider the implications if they are carried out on your campus.  Given the alarming upsurge in anti-Semitism around the world and right here in the U.S., it is crucial that the behavior of this group be carefully monitored.  We urge you to ensure that the SJP upholds BU’s goal of diversity and inclusiveness, that the group’s conduct conforms to university policy and the law, and that the SJP does not threaten or infringe on the rights of other members of your university community.

Sincerely,

Alpha Epsilon Pi Fraternity (AEPi)
AMCHA Initiative
American Association of Jewish Lawyers and Jurists
Americans for Peace and Tolerance
David Horowitz Freedom Center
Endowment for Middle East Truth (EMET)
Hasbara Fellowships
Institute for Black Solidarity with Israel 
National Conference on Jewish Affairs  
Proclaiming Justice to the Nations   
Scholars for Peace in the Middle East   
Simon Wiesenthal Center 
StandWithUs
The Lawfare Project
Zionist Organization of America


Cc:  SUNY Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher
       SUNY Board of Trustees
       NY Board of Regents Chancellor Merryl H. Tisch
       NY Board of Regents Vice Chancellor Anthony S. Bottar 
       NY State Senate Education Committee Chair John J. Flanagan
       NY State Assembly Education Committee Chair Catherine Nolan
       NY State Senator Tom Libous (District 52) 
       NY State Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo (District 123) 
       NY State Comptroller Thomas P DiNapoli
       Governor Andrew M. Cuomo
       U.S. Senator Kirsten E. Gillibrand
       U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer
       U.S. Representative Richard L. Hanna (NY District 22)
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If SJP is so concerned with disciplining members who express anti-Semitism, they might call in their own founder to ask him a few questions. That would be Hatem Bazian, currently a professor at UC Berkeley. Over the past several years of his anti-Israel agitation, he has been accused of quoting that warm and fuzzy hadith that talks about the Day of Judgment when the "Jews will hide behind rocks and trees and the rocks and trees will call out to the Muslim, 'Oh Muslim: There is a Jew behind me. Come and kill him"'. Bazian has also been alleged to have told a campus audience he was speaking to that they should  count the number of buildings on campus to see how many had Jewish names. I attempted  to question him about those allegations when he spoke at UC Irvine a few years back, and he danced all around them. I never did get a straight answer. Maybe the "human rights activists" at SJP can.
 
As I understand it, SJP is affiliated with Bazian's most recent organization, American Muslims for Palestine. I wonder if Mr Bazian has any connection this latest strategy as expressed by a chapter of the organization he founded. I'm not saying he does, but if he doesn't, I think he should publicly condemn it. I would also think that the University of California at Berkeley would expect as much from one of its professors.