Salam Al Marayati

A Muslim-American extremist has been disinvited from a Jewish-organized civil rights panel, and Jewish liberals are denouncing his removal as a suppression of free speech.

But the real outrage here is that he was invited in the first place.

Salam Al-Marayati, longtime president of the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), was invited by a group called Jews United for Democracy to speak as part of its panel on “After Four Years of Division, Tension and Bigotry—Now What?”

Yet Al-Marayati himself is a promoter of division, tension and bigotry. Bigotry against Jews, that is.

Al-Marayati’s organization, MPAC, publicly defended infamous French Holocaust-denier Roger Garaudy, after Garaudy was fined by the French government for his denial activities.

Al-Marayati was a longtime member of the small editorial board of The Minaret, a magazine closely associated with MPAC leaders, which in the 1990s and early 2000s repeatedly published grotesque political cartoons depicting Jews and Israel controlling the American government. That theme was consistent with Al-Marayati’s assertion that the U.S. “is in full partnership with Israel. Where Israel goes, our government follows.”

Al-Marayati has had a long association with the white supremacist William Baker, the onetime chairman of the extremist Populist Party, which was founded by a late neo-Nazi leader / Holocaust denier named Willis Carto, in 1984. MPAC has invited Baker to speak at a number of events. At MPAC’s “United for Al Quds Conference” in 2002, Al-Marayati himself introduced and praised Baker.

Comparing Israel to Nazi Germany is standard fare for Al-Marayati. For example, writing in the notoriously anti-Israel magazine Washington Report on Middle East Affairs in June 1994, Marayati asserted: “Just as Hitler forged a conflict between Judaism and Christianity, apologists for Israel crave for Islam to be at odds with both Judaism and Christianity.”

Let it be noted that the U.S. government, together with the 30 other member-states of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, uses a definition of antisemitism which states unequivocally that “Drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis” is anti-Semitic.

Al-Marayati’s ugly record of Israel-bashing also includes his declaration, immediately after the 9/11 Islamic terrorist attacks, that ”If we’re going to look at suspects, we should look to the groups that benefit the most from these kinds of incidents, and I think we should put the state of Israel on the suspect list because I think this diverts attention from what’s happening in the Palestinian territories so that they can go on with their aggression and occupation and apartheid policies.”

At the same time, Al-Marayati has a long record of justifying or condoning Islamic terrorism. He has equated America’s struggle for independence from Britain with Islamic fundamentalism. He denounced then-Senator Joe Biden’s Counterterrorism Act of 1995. He accused the U.S. of committing “a terrible act of terrorism” by sanctioning Saddam Hussein’s Iraq. He condemned the U.S. for striking at terrorists in Sudan and Afghanistan.

Here’s what Al-Marayati’s MPAC had to say following the March 1997 suicide bombing in Tel Aviv that left three dead and 48 wounded: “Because the Palestinian people have no avenues to redress their grievances, some of them have been pushed beyond the margins of society and have adopted violent reactions to express their despair and suffering.”

Al-Marayati’s occasional statements condemning terrorism are meaningless, because he defines Israel’s actions as terrorism and Palestinian Arab violence as freedom-fighting. Here’s how MPAC has put it: “Terrorism is wrong: Israeli occupation is terrorism and oppression. American policy must be based on the recognition that no people will remain passive under foreign occupation and military aggression. The Palestinian people are no different…The uprising is a spontaneous, collective reaction to the continued illegal and immoral Israeli occupation of the Palestinian people and their land.”

Likewise, regarding Hezbollah, Al-Marayati has said: “If the Lebanese people are resisting Israeli intransigence on Lebanese soil, then that is the right of resistance and they have the right to target Israeli soldiers in this conflict. That is not terrorism. That is a legitimate resistance. That could be called liberation movement, that could be called anything, but it’s not terrorism.”

That’s why then-Congressman Richard Gephardt (D-Missouri) withdrew the nomination of Al-Marayati to serve on the National Commission on Terrorism in 1999. Al-Marayati’s record of apologizing for terrorism is lengthy, indisputable, and nothing less than damning.

In recent years, Al-Marayati has softened his tone in the hope of trying to re-enter the mainstream. But sometimes he just can’t resist showing his true colors. Last year, he and MPAC signed a public letter defending Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, following her statements accusing Jews of bribing members of Congress to support Israel.

I guess Al-Marayati’s support for Rep. Omar is no coincidence, considering that Omar’s statements sound a lot like what Al-Marayati and his organization have been saying about Jews for the past three decades. Birds of a feather flock together, after all.

Nikki Haley Walks Out of UN During “Palestinian” Envoy’s Speech

Nikki Haley keeps on showing why she deserves to be the United States Ambassador to the UN.  After her speech at the UN, where she defended Israel’s use of force against “Palestinian” terrorists dressed as protestors, she decided to lodge her own protest against the “Palestinian” Authority by walking out while its envoy Riyad H. Mansour was speaking.

Mansour claimed Israel indiscriminately shot unarmed civilians and committed genocide.  Two claims proven false by Hamas’ own admission. Later he spoke with ABC outside saying:  “We condemn in the strongest term the atrocity by the Israeli occupying forces using this massive firepower against civilians who have the right to demonstrate peacefully, and they have been demonstrating peacefully.”

Mansour continued: “We demand that this action be stopped immediately, and we want those responsible to be brought to justice from the Israeli side because this is not allowed under the provisions of international law.”

Yet, Mansour’s claim the “Palestinians” were protesting “peacefully” has been proven wrong by Hamas’ own admission.

See the image in the Tweet below:

Here is just one of many examples of their “non-violent protest”:

and of course another example:

Nothing beats their own leadership admitting “these are not peaceful protests,”:


BIBI NETANYAHU TO ERDOGAN: “Don’t Preach to Us About Morality”

Turkey’s islamist and autocratic ruler President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has taken the lead in the current international onslaught against Israel for its defense from Hamas terrorists.

“Israel is wreaking state terror. Israel is a terror state,” Erdogan told Turkish students in London. “What Israel has done is a genocide. I condemn this humanitarian drama, the genocide, from whichever side it comes, Israel or America.”

In response to Israel’s defense on the Gaza border, Turkey has recalled its ambassadors from both Israel and the United States.

In response to Erdogan’s comments Prime Minister Netanyahu responded by stating: “Erdogan is among Hamas’s biggest supporters and there is no doubt that he well understands terrorism and slaughter. I suggest that he not preach morality to us.”

Beyond supporting Hamas, it was Erdogan’s Turkish Armed Forces (TAF) that not only overran the Kurdish majority Afrin canton in Syria over a month ago, but killed thousands of what he called Kurdish terrorists.  Most reports indicated that many of those killed were civilians.  Of course as I noted in an article at the time, Erdogan selectively uses the word terrorist interchangeably when referring to groups of people he doesn’t like.

Netanyahu had said something similar in response to another outrageous Erdogan comment back in April: “Erdogan is not used to people responding to him, but he should start getting used to it. Anyone who occupies northern Cyprus, invades the Kurdish strip and slaughters citizens in Afrin, should not lecture us about values and ethics.”

I wrote the following in connection to the Prime Minister’s response: “The continuing realignment in the Middle East has begun to create chaos with a number of actors scrambling to pick sides. Donald Trump has clearly decided to pull the USA out of the mess, but that has only created more of a mess. Bibi’s statement about the Kurds and Cyprus is a hint of the role that Israel appears ready and willing to take on. This of course pits the Jewish state on a collision course with Turkey who has delusions of returning to the golden age of the Ottoman Empire.”

Since April Israel has strengthened its eastern Mediteranean alliance with both Cyprus and Greece with a direct visit to Cyprus by Bibi to strengthen Israel’s partnership on building the EastMed Pipeline last week.

The event was not lost on Erdogan, who stands to lose big on enhanced ties between Cyprus, Greece, and Israel. In fact Erdogan cited an east Meditereanean security threat due to Cyprus’ activities in the eastern Meditereanean.  Like anything else Erdogan doesn’t like, it becomes a dangerous security threat or essentially a false pretext to pick a fight.

Israel must continue to take the mantle of leadership it has been given and lead and remain undaunted in the face of faux moralists who twist the truth to suit their geopolitical needs. This is why Prime Minister Netanyahu quoted the prophet Zecharia at the embassy opening: “Jerusalem is the City of Truth.”


Money keeps flowing to the Mullahs as their Israel hatred heats up.

The website Iran Front Page proudly announces: “The first edition of International Hourglass Festival, dedicated to anti-Israel art and media productions, will be held in the Iranian capital Tehran in April.”

Last week a press conference on the festival was held in Tehran. During it Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, identified as “the Secretary-General of the International Conference on Supporting Palestinian Intifada and an international advisor to Iran’s Parliament Speaker,” explained that “the ‘Hourglass Festival’ is a symbol of the imminent collapse of the Zionist regime of Israel, as predicted by the Leader of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei.”

Amir-Abdollahian further explained that he “cannot publicize the Islamic Republic’s plan to realize the Leader’s prediction that the Israeli regime will collapse within 25 years, but it will definitely happen.”

What will the Hourglass Festival be like? Its executive secretary, Mahdi Qomi, offers a preview, saying it “will be held in 11 sections”:

Audio-visual productions, graphic design (poster, cartoons, etc.), mobile apps, mobile and web-based games, social media and websites, animation, motion-graphics, start-ups are among the fields in which the festival accepts entries.

The festival will accept entries until April 21, when all the submitted works will be put on display to the public….

The organizers will work with 2,400 anti-Israel NGOs in Europe, North America, Latin America, and Eastern Asia to promote the festival across the world, Qomi said.

The website for the festival itself features a disappearing Star of David. It declares that “Israel Will Not Exist in 25 Years: if the resistance fron [sic] stands firm, the enemy cannot do a damn thing,” while offering instructions for submissions and much else.

Seemingly this is news; it’s one UN member-state not only calling for the destruction of another UN member-state but holding an international festival devoted to that goal. Yet so far it is almost solely some Israeli and pro-Israeli websites that have reported the development.

This is hardly, of course, the first time Iranian leaders and officials have openly called for Israel’s eradication. Apparently, if you do it enough it becomes humdrum and acceptable—even with the added twist of an international effort, in tandem with “2,400 NGOS,” to instill the notion that the Jewish state needs to be wiped off the face of the earth.

Meanwhile West European countries are in a state of anxiety over President Trump’s warning that unless the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, or JCPOA, is seriously modified, he will withdraw from the deal and reinstate U.S. sanctions. These countries regard Iran—ayatollah regime and all—as an invaluable business partner to be protected at all costs.

As the Financial Times reported last October:

European countries are battling to save commercial ties with Iran as part of a wider effort to stop the US upending the landmark deal to curb Tehran’s nuclear programme. [That includes] contingency plans to protect companies such as Airbus, Total, Siemens and Peugeot, which have all struck deals in Iran….

[Since the JCPOA] trade  between Iran and the EU, which was Tehran’s top trading partner before broad economic sanctions were imposed in 2010, has all but doubled annually to almost €10bn for the first half of [2017]….

It turns out Germany is one of the countries reaping a bonanza from this renewed trade. In the first nine months of 2017 “Germany sold 2.358 billion euros worth of goods ($2.846 billion) to Iran,” while it “imported just $328 million worth of goods from Iran”—a huge trade surplus in Germany’s favor. And “German exports to Iran…remain on a steep upward curve.”

The article—posted on the Deutsche Welle site—complains that “The Trump Administration has taken a strident anti-Iranian tone, as have the political establishments of Israel and the Gulf Arab countries.” That is, even though Iran sponsors subversion and terror against Israel and Gulf Arab countries and threatens their destruction, strident tones are something to avoid when German business is at stake.

At the Munich Security Conference in February, U.S. national security adviser H. R. McMaster and Saudi foreign minister Adel al-Jubeir raised the issue that European funds are flowing to Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). The Revolutionary Guard is the main engine of Iranian subversion and terror and is believed to control about a third of Iran’s economy.

Yet CNBC reports that Iran’s key business partners Germany, France, and the UK keep fighting the good fight for European multinationals Airbus, Siemens, Peugeot, and Total, all of which have “struck major deals in the country worth billions.”

When business is that good, it would be naïve in the extreme to think that any further Iranian outrage—even an innovation like the International Hourglass Festival—could swing the Euros toward Trump’s stance on reining in Iran.

Instead it can be confidently predicted that the festival in April will go forward and most of the international community will keep trading with Iran and treating it as a respectable, legitimate country. Meanwhile Israel’s government will be seen as “too right-wing.”

 Originally Published on FrontPageMag.


Terror, lies and taxpayer money.

A tree may grow in Brooklyn, but a Saddam Hussein memorial has grown in Qalqilya.

Qalqilya is one of those ancient, historic “Palestinian” cities. So it dates back all the way to 1893. The population of Qalqilya more than quadrupled under Israeli rule. That’s typical of Zionist genocide which somehow vastly increases the number of Arab Muslims and their shrill accusations of genocide.

In the ancient 19th century Palestinian city of Qalqilya, dating back all the way to the days of President Grover Cleveland and the invention of the jukebox, Hamas is popular. It even elected its own mayor before he was removed from office and the Palestinian Authority’s Fatah was put back in charge. Politics in Qalqilya remains a pitched battle between Hamas and Fatah over who hates the Jews more and has the best plan for destroying them.

There isn’t much to do in Qalqilya except visit its zoo. The Qalqilya Zoo is the worst zoo in the world and embodies everything wrong with “Palestine”. Israelis helped set up the zoo as a gesture of peace. It was supposed to be a “jewel in the crown of Palestinian national institutions.”

And it just might be.

Recently, a bear ate a 9-year-old boy’s arm at the zoo. The zebras and the giraffes allegedly died as a result of Muslim attacks on Israelis near the zoo. The self-taught taxidermist who runs the zoo has an exhibition of dead animals he has stuffed and mounted, and whose deaths he blames on Israel.

Like everything else about “Palestine”, Israeli goodwill ended in death and anti-Israel propaganda.

But Qalqilyans or Qalqilyites now have something else to do besides get their arms ripped off by a bear or visit one of the city’s 26 mosques. They can stop by the Saddam Hussein Memorial.

One side of the memorial has Saddam Hussein in a beret saluting himself. The other shows an older Saddam waving his rifle in the air. If the city fathers of Qalqilya had been more on the ball, they could have acquired the Ruger M77 bolt-action rifle in question for under $50K after it was taken from the rubble of his presidential palace in Mosul and sold at auction by a senior CIA officer in Baghdad.

The Saddam Hussein Memorial bears such cheerful welcoming messages as “Saddam Hussein – The Master of the Martyrs in Our Age,” and “Arab Palestine from the River to the Sea.”

Governor Rafi Rawajba compared Saddam, Arafat and Mahmoud Abbas: the current head of the Palestinian Authority. “Saddam was an emblem of heroism, honor, originality and defiance, as was the martyr Yasser Arafat.”

“President Abu Mazen (Mahmoud Abbas) makes sure to follow in the footsteps of these two great leaders,” he gushed.

Qalqilya Mayor Othman Daoud, also of Fatah, had previously paid tribute to Saddam for sticking to “his principles and the Palestinian cause until his death as a Martyr.”

The governor of Qalqiliya was appointed by Abbas. While the Palestinian Authority president doesn’t have Saddam’s arsenal or snazzy berets, he has the same affinity for democracy as Saddam.

President Abbas was elected to a four-year term in 2005. It’s been the longest four years ever.

Governor Rafi Rawajba was appointed by Abbas, not elected. He’s a member of Fatah, which is the political movement that dominates the PLO, and the PLO runs the Palestinian Authority. Also present was an official from the Arab Liberation Front which is also part of the PLO. The ALF was a project of Saddam Hussein and he used it to hand out cash to the families of Islamic terrorists in Israel.

Before the latest Iraq War, the ALF promised to hand out a million dollars to terrorist families. The Bush administration used that as evidence that Saddam Hussein supported terrorists and had to be removed.

There’s just one problem.

The ALF claimed that Saddam had handed out $35 million to terror families in 3 years. The Palestinian Authority pays out over $300 million a year. It’s currently at $355 million.

The PA spends 10 times more on terror payments in 1 year than Saddam did over 3 years.

And the best part is that most of the money comes from us. The Palestinian Authority doesn’t have much of an economy. It relies on foreign aid. Some of that money comes from Europe, Japan and the Saudis. A whole lot of it comes from Americans.

Even while we were fighting to remove Saddam Hussein, we were funding the PLO which included a faction under Saddam’s control that was doing the very thing we were condemning him for.

The Taylor Force Act, named after an American veteran of Afghanistan and Iraq murdered by a Fatah-supported terrorist, is slowly wending its way through Congress. If it isn’t neutered, it will cut off some of our aid to the Palestinian Authority until it stops funding terrorism.

Taylor Force was murdered by Bashar Masalha.

Palestinian Authority television reported that, “In Qalqilya, hundreds of citizens accompanied by the body of Martyr Bashar Masalha.”

“The Martyr Bashar Masalha returned from Qalqilya to his village Hajja in a procession,” PA TV gushed, describing the burial of a terrorist who had murdered an American as a “national wedding” in which he was “embraced by the soil of his homeland as a Martyr.”

Qalqilya is not the only Muslim settlement in Palestinian-occupied Israel to have its own Saddam Hussein memorial. There’s one in Beit Rima, a town square in the Palestinian Authority’s capital of Ramallah and a UN refugee center in Jenin.

And, if business goes on as usual, the PA will be funded by hundreds of millions in taxpayer money.

Maybe it’s time we finally stopped funding the Palestinian Authority, its terrorists and the aspirations of its dictator to follow in Saddam Hussein’s footsteps.

If the Muslim colonists of the Palestinian Authority want to continue their war with Israel over settlements like Qalqilya illegally built on the indigenous territory of the Jewish people, they can do that without our help. As they were doing it without our help for decades until Bill Clinton decided that a greasy Egyptian former Muslim Brotherhood member named Arafat was his key to a Nobel Prize.

American taxpayers are paying Muslim terrorists to murder Americans. We’ve poured money into the Qalqilya Governate which has benefited from numerous USAID projects. And, in return, the locals are erecting monuments to Saddam Hussein. And a Fatah thug appointed by President Abbas, the dictator we subsidize with hundreds of millions a year, claims that Abbas is following in the footsteps of Saddam.

After spending thousands of lives in Iraq, we’re spending hundreds of millions of dollars funding a Palestinian Saddam.

Making the Taylor Force Act into law is the only decent thing to do. But Secretary of State Tillerson also needs to end the doubletalk about the Palestinian Authority’s funding of terrorism. And Abbas’ enablers, in the media and the Jewish world, have to be held accountable for the lies and the terrorism.

The Palestinian Authority’s terror boss has made it abundantly clear that he doesn’t want peace. The latest reconciliation effort with Hamas is another reminder of it. He isn’t interested in democracy either. Not unless the elections are rigged. What does Abbas want? If you believe his crony in Qalqilya, he wants to be Saddam Hussein. If he wants to follow in Saddam’s footsteps, he can do it without our cash.

Or the next Saddam Hussein memorial can be on us.

Originally Published in FrontPageMag.

Decertifying Iran- A moral imperative. But now what?

As the experience of 2003 shows, Iran will only abandon its nuclear program if confronted by what it perceives to be a tangible military threat

In a large country with multiple facilities and ample experience in nuclear concealment, violations will be inherently difficult to detect. Devising theoretical models of inspection is one thing. Enforcing compliance, week after week, despite competing international crises and domestic distractions, is another. Any report of a violation is likely to prompt debate over its significance—or even calls for new talks with Tehran to explore the issue – Henry Kissinger and George Shultz, Wall Street Journal, April 7, 2015.

…in 2015, Congress passed the Iran nuclear agreement review act to ensure that Congress’s voice would be heard on the deal. Among other conditions the law requires the president of his designee to certify that the suspension of sanction under the deal is appropriate and proportionate to…measures taken by Iran to terminate its illicit nuclear program. Based on the factual record…I am announcing today that we cannot and will not make this certification we will not continue down a path whose predictable conclusion is more violence, more terror, and the very real threat of Iran’s nuclear breakout – President Donald Trump, October 13, 2017.

Last Friday, the US president, Donald Trump, refused to certify the July 2015 nuclear Iran “deal” concluded in Vienna on July 14, 2015 between Iran, and the P5+1(the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany), and the EU on the other.

Dubbed with the wildly inappropriate misnomer the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action” (JCPOA) the “deal” is—as we shall see—anything but “comprehensive”. Moreover, it could hardly be designated a “plan of action” when a far more fitting characterization of it would appear to be a “plan of inaction”.  

Decertification: The moral imperative

In effect, by decertifying the JCPOA, Trump was merely fulfilling his legal obligations under the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act (INARA).

Passed immediately following the signature of JCPOA, the INARA bill mandates (among other things):

The President shall, at least every 90 days, determine whether the President is able to certify that:

– Iran is fully implementing the agreement,

– Iran has not committed a material breach of the agreement,

– Iran has not taken any action that could significantly advance its nuclear weapons program, and

– Suspension of sanctions against Iran is appropriate and proportionate to measures taken by Iran with respect to terminating its illicit nuclear program and vital to U.S. national security interests.

In light of the record of Iran’s gross misconduct, it is patently clear—or at least, it should be—that no US president could, in good faith, certify that Iran was in compliance with its JCPOA commitments or that continued US adherence to the JCPOA—particularly the suspension of sanctions against Iran—was “vital to US national security interests”.

After all, how can anyone certify that Iran is in compliance with its pledges to not “advance its nuclear weapons program” or is not in “material breach of the agreement”, when this is impossible to verify, given the fact that Tehran has barred inspection of its military sites—the very sites in which one might suspect militarized Iranian endeavor is taking place.

Moral imperative (cont.)

But perhaps even more astonishing and disconcerting is the revelation that “secret side deals” exist between Iran and third parties, to which the US is neither privy, nor party to—and hence has not the foggiest notion as to how these may impact or impair the implementation of, or the adherence to the terms of the JCPOA. Typically, these involve “deals” between Tehran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the body charged with the inspection of Iranian nuclear sites. Incredibly, in some cases, these deals allow Iran to conduct its own inspection of its facilities. Moreover, the IAEA is obliged to keep much of the information gathered confidential and not share it with other parties—including the US.

You couldn’t make this stuff up!

No less crippling to effective inspection—and hence to the ability of the US president to certify that Iran is in compliance with the JCPOA—is the fact that if suspicion arises that illicit activity is being conducted, Iran must be given weeks of advance warning, providing it ample opportunity to conceal or dispose of any incriminating evidence. Worse, the Iranians must also be provided with adequate reasons for the suspicion of untoward conduct on their part, thus   risking exposure of intelligence sources that provided the relevant information!

Indeed, these very absurdities of the JCPOA were crisply and caustically conveyed by Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu in a Knesset address on the day immediately after it was reached: “It’s like giving a criminal organization that deals drugs a 24-day warning before inspecting its drug lab…The agreement also requires the world powers to… show Iran the very intelligence for which they want to conduct the inspections in the first place.”

Incomprehensive plan of inaction

To be honest Donald Trump has never really been my “cup-of-tea”. Indeed, without wishing to be too disparaging, to my mind, his incontestable advantage is that he is…not Hilary Clinton.

That said, the decertification speech was undeniably impressive. He provided an effective tour d’horizon of Iranian malfeasance: Tehran’s violation of agreed production quotas of heavy water and operation of advanced centrifuges; its intimidation of inspectors from carrying out their work effectively; its flouting of international resolutions regarding the development of ballistic missile technology; its fomenting turmoil “throughout the Middle East and beyond”; and last but not least, its sponsorship of terror across the globe.

In this, Trump demonstrated compellingly that Iran had not only violated the spirit, but also the letter, of the JCPOA. But beyond that, he not only exposed how appallingly incomprehensive this purportedly “comprehensive” blueprint is, but also the grave perils of inaction the alleged “plan of action” necessarily entails.

Indeed, without wishing to push historical parallels too far, some portions of Trump’s speech were distinctly reminiscent of Winston Churchill’s stern caveat in his epic account of World War II, ‘The Gathering Storm,’ in which he cautioned: “…. if you will not fight when your victory is sure and not too costly; you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a precarious chance of survival”.

Expressing strikingly similar sentiments, Trump warned: “History has shown that the longer we ignore a threat, the more dangerous that threat becomes…We will not continue down a path whose predictable conclusion is more violence, more terror, and the very real threat of Iran’s nuclear breakout”.

Incomprehensive inaction (cont.)

Trump detailed Iran’s transgression as justification for his decision to desist from certifying the JCPOA: “Our policy is based on a clear-eyed assessment of the Iranian dictatorship, its sponsorship of terrorism, and its continuing aggression in the Middle East and all around the world…Based on the factual record I have put forward, I am announcing today that we cannot and will not make this certification.”

Of course, this catalogue of Iranian misconduct underscores just how hopelessly ineffectual the entire JCPOA edifice is. For by limiting its relevance to Iran’s nuclear program (and even then inadequately), it, in effect, allows the Islamist theocracy license to wreak mayhem in any other sphere, wherever and whenever it chooses—without incurring any of the penalties in the unverifiable nuclear deal.

To convey just how ludicrous the JCPOA arrangement is, just imagine reaching an agreement with a belligerent neighbor down the road that he will refrain from attacking you and your family with firearms but is free to stab you with knives, batter you with clubs, impale you on spears and target you with arrows. Worse, not only is he free to do this without retribution, but you actually agree to help him finance  his stockpile of said knives, clubs, spears and arrows.

Ridiculous as this might seem, this is in principle precisely what Trump was called on to certify last Friday—and is being vilified by allies and adversaries for not doing so.

Go figure.

The futility of “fixing”, the necessity of “nixing”

While decertification of the JCPOA is both inevitable and imperative, it is not in itself an alternative strategy. Indeed, even the Trump administration itself has been at pains to clarify that, in and of itself, the decertification does not automatically imply that—with all the withering criticism it has of the agreement—the US will not necessarily opt out of it.

This is a risky position to adopt and, like a man with one foot on the pier and the other in the boat, it is one that cannot be maintained for long. Indeed, the US has now created a clear choice for itself if it is not to retreat humiliatingly from the robust stance it has taken: Either to endeavor to fix the defective JCPOA, or to nix it.

Any remotely realistic analysis will swiftly lead to the conclusion that any endeavor to fix the JCPOA (i.e. introduce far more intrusive inspection procedures and impose far more extensive and intensive punitive measures for delinquent Iranian behavior) are futile.

Clearly, it would require large doses of unfounded and unbounded optimism to believe that Iran could be induced by diplomatic pressure to submit itself to a harsher regime of inspections/sanctions than that currently stipulated in the JCPOA. After all, if the P5+1 countries backed away from sterner coercive measures when confronting a weaker, poorer Iran, what reason is there to believe (and more importantly, for Tehran to believe) they would stand up to a now much richer and stronger Iran??

This bleak prospect leaves us with only one other option – the necessity to nix the JCPOA in its entirety – which might just happen anyway. For as Brookings Institution’s Suzanne Maloney predicts: “Decertification corrodes the legitimacy of the deal…[It]will slowly collapse.”

Decertification- what now?

So how is the US (and Israel( to deal with a post-JCPOA reality? What strategies are available to prevent a good initiative from making the situation worse?

According to its adherents, the JCPOA was the best possible agreement. This is clearly an untenable contention—unless the underlying assumption is that the only feasible alternatives are those Iran deigns to accept.

However, if the rationale is not to accommodate the ayatollahs, but to coerce them or replace them, the alternatives are clear:

The first of these options is to enhance US sanctions, backed by a credible threat of military action aimed at destroying Iran’s nuclear facilities and their attendant infrastructure.


Skeptics as to the efficacy of such a harsh alternative should be reminded of the events of 2003, when Iran, in effect, curtailed its nuclear program after the US-led invasion of Iraq created a tangible threat which US-military presence projected in the eyes of the Islamic Republic. As a result “Iran agree[d] to suspend its uranium–enrichment activities and ratify an additional protocol requiring Iran to provide an expanded declaration of its nuclear activities and granting the IAEA broader rights of access to sites in the country.


Significantly, once the threat perception receded, Tehran annulled this agreement and reverted to accelerating its nuclear program.


What now? (cont.)


The only effective alternative to coercing the ayatollahs to abandon their nuclear program is to replace them –i.e. induce regime change. Sadly, just as it has greatly reduced the possibility (or at least, greatly increased the cost) of coercing them to forgo nuclear weapons capability, so it has dimmed the prospects for regime change. In the words of one well-known Iranian expatriate: “The Vienna [i.e JCPOA] deal bears a very grave danger for Iran’s civil society. Not only won’t we see their economic situation improve, but the regime will also have an incentive to abuse human rights more severely. A flood of cash is going into the pockets of this leadership. It will be used to tighten their grip [on power] and to further imprison, torture and kill innocent Iranians.”

So over  two years after it was agreed upon, all the JCPOA has really achieved is to empower the Iranian tyranny militarily, enrich it economically and entrench it politically—for nothing more than a dubious delaying of its acquisition of weaponized nuclear capability.

Which, of course, is why decertifying it was no more than a moral imperative.


Trump lays the groundwork for a real strategy against Iran to begin.

On Friday, US President Donald Trump initiated an important change in US policy toward Iran.

No, in his speech decertifying Iran’s compliance with the nuclear accord it struck with his predecessor Barack Obama, Trump didn’t announce a new strategy for preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, or stemming its hegemonic rise in the Middle East, or limiting its ability to sponsor terrorism.

Trump’s move was not operational. It was directional.

In his address Friday, Trump changed the policy dynamics that dictate US policy on Iran. For the first time since 2009, when Obama backed the murderous regime in Tehran, spurning the millions of Iranians who rose up in the Green Revolution, Trump opened up the possibility that the US may begin to base its policies toward Iran on reality.

Trump began his remarks by setting out Iran’s long rap sheet of aggression against America.

Starting with the US embassy seizure and hostage crisis, Trump described Iran’s crimes and acts of war against America in greater detail than any of his predecessors ever did.

Trump’s dossier was interlaced with condemnations of the regime’s repression of its own people.

By merging Iran’s external aggression with its internal repression, Trump signaled a readiness to drive a wedge – or expand the wedge – between the authoritarian theocrats that rule Iran and the largely secular, multiethnic and pro-Western people of Iran.

Trump then turned his attention to Iran’s illicit ballistic missile program, its sponsorship of terrorism, including its links to al-Qaida, its aggression against its neighbors, its aggressive acts against maritime traffic in the Straits of Hormuz, and its bids to destabilize and control large swaths of the Middle East through its proxies.

It is notable that these remarks preceded Trump’s discussion of the nuclear deal – which was the ostensible subject of his speech. Before Trump discussed Iran’s breaches of the nuclear deal, he first demonstrated that contrary to the expressed views of his top advisers, it is impossible to limit a realistic discussion of the threat Iran constitutes to US national security and interests to whether or not and it what manner it is breaching the nuclear accord.

This was a critical point because for the past two years, US discourse on Iran has focused solely on whether or not Iran was complying with Obama’s nuclear pact. By placing the nuclear deal in the context of Iran’s consistent, overarching hostility and aggression, Trump made it self-evident that no US interest is served in continuing to give Iran a free pass from congressional sanctions.

After accomplishing that goal, Trump turned his attention to how Iran is actually breaching the letter and spirit of the nuclear pact. Only then, almost as an afterthought, did he announce that he was decertifying Iranian compliance with the nuclear deal, setting the conditions for the renewal of congressional sanctions on Iran and opening the floodgates of congressional sanctions on Iran in retaliation for the full spectrum of its aggressive and illicit acts against the US, its interests and allies.

By empowering Congress to prohibit economic cooperation with Iran, Trump put the Europeans, Chinese and Russians on notice that they may soon face a choice between conducting business with the US and conducting business with Iran.

After putting them on notice, Trump discussed the possibility of improving Obama’s nuclear accord. Among other things, he suggested expanding the inspection regime against Iran’s nuclear installations and canceling the so-called “sunset” clause that places an end date on the restrictions governing certain components of Iran’s nuclear advancement.

Trump’s address has the potential to serve as the foundation of a major, positive shift in US policy toward Iran. Such a shift could potentially facilitate the achievement of Trump’s goals of preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, containing its regional aggression and empowerment and defeating its terrorist proxies.

Unfortunately, it is also likely, indeed, it is more likely, that his words will not be translated into policies to achieve these critical aims.

Trump’s decision to transfer immediate responsibility to Congress for holding Iran accountable for its hostile actions on the military and other fronts is a risky move. He has a lot of enemies, and the nuclear deal has a lot of supporters on Capitol Hill.

Obama would have never been able to implement his nuclear deal if Senator Bob Corker, chairman of the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee, hadn’t agreed to cast the Constitution aside and ignore Obama’s constitutional duty to present the nuclear deal to the Senate for ratification as a treaty.

Over the past week, Trump and Corker have been involved in an ugly public fight precipitated by Corker’s announcement that he will not be seeking reelection next year.

Today Corker has nothing to restrain him from scuttling Trump’s agenda. If he wishes, out of spite, Corker can block effective sanctions from being passed. And he may do so even though the implications for his Senate colleagues would be dire and even though doing so would render him an unofficial protector of Iran’s nuclear program.

What is true for Corker is doubly true for the Democrats.

Leading Democratic senators like Robert Menendez, Ben Cardin and Chuck Schumer, who opposed Obama’s Iran deal may now feel that as opponents of the Trump administration, they are required to oppose any change to the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act.

Indeed, given the rise of radical forces in their party it is likely that they would rather give Iran a free pass for its anti-American aggression and nuclear proliferation than work with Republicans on Capitol Hill and in the White House.

Then again, by framing the issue of Iran’s threat to America as he did, and by transferring responsibility for reinstating sanctions and passing further sanctions on Iran to Congress, Trump opened up the possibility that Congress will conduct substantive – rather than personal – debates on Iran.

And the more substantive those debates become, the further away the US discourse will move from the mendacious assumptions of Obama’s Iran policy – that the Iranian regime is a responsible actor and potential US ally, and that there is nothing inherently aggressive or problematic about Iran’s illicit nuclear weapons program.

The second major risk inherent in Trump’s approach is that he will get his way; that the Europeans, Russians and Chinese and the Iranians will agree to improve the nuclear deal. The problem here is not obvious. Clearly, it is better if the deal is amended to delete the sunset clauses and expand the inspections regime.

Yet even an amended, improved deal will still serve as a shield to Iran’s nuclear program. An improved deal won’t destroy Iran’s centrifuges.

It won’t take away Iran’s enriched uranium. It won’t destroy Iran’s nuclear installations. And it won’t bring down the regime which by its nature ensures all of these things will remain a menace to the US, its allies and international security as a whole.

So long as the US continues to maintain a policy based on the false view that all that is necessary to destroy the threat of a nuclear armed Iran is a combination of the nuclear deal and economic sanctions, it will continue to ensure that Iran and its nuclear program remain a major threat. Distressingly, US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley, the most outspoken supporter of decertifying Iranian compliance in the Trump administration, told NBC on Sunday that the US intends to remain in the nuclear deal.

To understand what must be done we must return to Trump’s speech and its strategic significance.

By taking a holistic view of the Iranian threat – grounded in a recognition of the inherent hostility of the regime – Trump opened up the possibility that the US and its allies can develop a holistic policy for confronting and defeating Iran and its proxies. If the Iran deal and sanctions are two components to a larger strategy rather than the entire strategy, they can be helpful.

A wider strategy would target Iran’s regional aggression by weakening its proxies and clients from Hezbollah and Hamas to the regimes in Iraq, Yemen, Syria and Lebanon. It would target the regime itself by empowering the ayatollahs’ domestic opponents. It would pin down Iranian forces by arming and otherwise assisting the Iraqi Kurds to defend and maintain their control over their territory along the Iranian border while strengthening the ties between Iranian Kurds and Iraqi Kurds.

Friday, Trump created the possibility for such a strategy. It is up to members of Congress, and US allies like Israel and the Sunni Arab states to help Trump conceive and implement it. If they fail, the possibility Trump created will be lost, perhaps irrevocably.

Originally published the Jerusalem Post

Iran, UNESCO, and President Trump’s Big Move

President Donald Trump is vigorously going after pillars of global “stability” at a lightning fast pace.  The State Department first rocked the international community this week when it would announce that the US would be quitting UNESCO by 2019 due to its inherent anti-Israel bias.

Second,the President himself gave a frank speech in which he announced is decision not to recertify the Iran nuke deal, punting the final decision to Congress.

These two decisions are the first shot across the bow of a rapidly changing Middle East that was allowed to plunge into chaos under the Obama Administration.  The Trump team understands that the Islamic decision to rewrite history using UNESCO in order to disconnect the Jewish nation from its own homeland is not just absurd but dangerous to America’s own sense of purpose. A world not governed by truth is one that is essentially filled with chaos.

This chaos has been used to allow Iran and Russia to essentially steer the future of the Middle East.  Trump’s removal of the US from UNESCO, which gave Israel the confidence to do the same is built around the message that globalism is not superior to moral clarity.   With all of the USA’s faults, it has still been viewed upon as a beacon freedom.  Trump is sending a message that those countries that stand with the US get first priority and in the Middle East, Trump is learning that Israel may be the most reliable.

President Trump’s decision not to recertify the Iran nuclear accord known as the JCPOA sends a serious message that Iran and its backers are scrambling to find a way to retaliate against.  Trump has now designated the Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist entity which places them within the bounds of the US military’s sights.

Trump said the following in part of his televised speech:

“The Iranian regime has committed multiple violations of the agreement, for example on two speared occasions they have exceeded the limit of 130 metric tons of heavy water, until recently, the Iranian regime has also failed to meet our expectation in its operation of advanced centrifuges. The Iranian regime has also intimidated international inspectors into not using the full inspection authorities that the agreement calls for. Iranian officials and military leaders have repeatedly claimed they will not allow inspectors onto military sites, even though the international community suspects some of those sites were part of Iran’s clandestine nuclear weapons program; there are also many people who believe that Iran is dealing with North Korea. I am going to instruct our intelligence agencies to do thorough analyses and report back their findings beyond what they have already reviewed. By its own terms the Iran deal was supposed to contribute to regional and international peace and security. And yet, while the U.S adheres to our commitment under the deal the Iranian regime continues to fuel conflict, terror and turmoil throughout the Middle East and beyond.”

Watch the full speech below:

Deputy commander of the Qods Force Ismail Ghaani told the Tanzim news agency:

“We are not a country that likes war, but any military threatening us will regret it. Trump is hurting America- we’ve buried many like him and we know how to fight the United States.”

Does this mean there will be war tomorrow?  Not necessarily, but Iran and Russia will not allow this to go quietly.  As for the Trump administration they understand that it is better to push back now than when Iran, backed by Russia and in partnership with Turkey finalizes its take over of the Middle East.  That would leave Israel surrounded and the USA locked out of a strategic region.

The globalists were hoping that President Trump would back off and toe the line, but it is clear that his foreign policy is built around America First, for better or worse. This makes for a rocky couple of next weeks that may see both the Middle East explode and the North Korean standoff break out into a full-blown war.

Yet, this multi-sphere conflict was set in motion the moment Obama decided to lower America and its allies stature within the world’s geopolitical arena.  Trump may seem like he is shaking the world, but he is heading off the ascendance of regimes that are totalitarian from do far more damage down the line.


Fatah’s surrender to Hamas.

On Tuesday, a delegation of 400 Fatah officials from Ramallah, led by Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah, arrived in Gaza to officially surrender to Hamas.

No, the ceremony isn’t being portrayed as a Fatah surrender to Hamas. But it is. It’s also an Egyptian surrender to Hamas.

How is this the case? Ten years ago this past June, after a very brief and deadly assault by Hamas terrorists against US-trained Fatah forces in Gaza, the Fatah forces cut and ran to Israel for protection. Fatah politicians also headed for the border and then scurried into Fatah-controlled (and Israeli protected) Ramallah. Ever since, Hamas has served as the official authority on the ground in Gaza. Its personnel have been responsible for internal security and for Gaza’s borders with Egypt and Israel.

Despite their humiliating defeat and removal from Gaza, Fatah and its PA government in Ramallah continued to fund Hamas-controlled Gaza. They paid Gaza’s bills, including the salaries of all the PA security forces that were either no longer working or working double shifts as stay at home Fatah gunmen and up and coming Hamas terrorist forces.

The PA paid Hamas’s electricity bills to Israel and it paid Israeli hospitals which continued to serve Gaza.

Internationally, the PA defended Hamas and its constant wars against Israel. The PA and Fatah, led by President-for-life Mahmoud Abbas, continued to use Israel’s defensive operations against Hamas as a means to ratchet up their political war against Israel. The latest victory in that war came last week with Interpol’s decision to permit the PA to join the organization despite its open support for and finance of terrorism.

For most of the past decade, the PA-Fatah has allocated more than half of its EU- and US-underwritten budget to Hamas-controlled Gaza. It has defended its actions to successive delegations of US lawmakers and three US administrations. It has defended its actions to EU watchdog groups. No amount of congressional pressure or statements from presidential envoys ever made a dent on Abbas’s strident devotion to paying the salaries of Hamas terrorists and functionaries.

But then, in April, Abbas cut them off.

Ostensibly he cut them off because he was under pressure from the US Congress, which is now in the end stages of passing the Taylor Force Act. Once passed, the law will make it a bit more difficult for the State Department to continue funding the terror- financing PA.

While the Taylor Force Act is the ostensible reason for Abbas’s move, Palestinian sources openly acknowledge that congressional pressure had nothing to do with his decision.

Abbas abruptly ended PA financing of Hamas in retaliation for Hamas’s decision to open relations with Abbas’s archrival in Fatah, Muhammad Dahlan.

From 1994, when the PA was established, until 2007, when Hamas ousted his US-trained forces from Gaza, Dahlan was the Gaza strongman.

Once one of Abbas’s closest cronies, since 2011 Dahlan has been his archenemy. Abbas, now in the twelfth year of his four-year term in office, views Dahlan as the primary threat to his continued reign.

As a consequence, he ousted Dahlan from Fatah and forced him to decamp with his sizable retinue to the UAE. There Dahlan enjoys exceedingly close ties with the Nahyan regime.

The UAE is allied with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Sisi. Both view Hamas’s mother organization the Muslim Brotherhood as their mortal foe. As a result, Sisi and the UAE as well as Saudi Arabia sided with Israel in its 2014 war with Hamas.

Since May, the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt have been in open conflict with Qatar. Qatar, which sponsors the Muslim Brotherhood, has long sponsored Hamas as well.

Since the start of the year, the UAE has been interested in prying Hamas away from Qatar. And so with the blessing of his UAE hosts, Dahlan began building ties with Hamas.

Recognizing Dahlan’s close ties to the UAE and through it, with Sisi, Hamas, which has been stricken by Sisi’s war against it, and particularly Sisi’s enforcement of the closure of Gaza’s border with Egypt’s Sinai, was quick to seize on Dahlan’s initiative.

The talks between Dahlan and Sisi on the one hand and Hamas on the other were ratcheted up in April after Abbas cut his funding to Gaza.

In May, Hamas formally cut its ties with the Muslim Brotherhood.

In exchange, Sisi permitted the Rafah border crossing with Gaza to open for longer hours and permitted Gazans to transit Egypt en route to their religious pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia, among other things.

To build its leverage against Abbas, beginning in the spring, Hamas began describing Dahlan as a viable alternative to Abbas. The UAE agreed to begin financing Hamas’s budget and to help pay for electricity.

Against this backdrop, it is self-evident that Abbas didn’t send his own representatives to Cairo to negotiate a surrender deal with Hamas because his aid cut-off brought Hamas to its knees. Abbas sent his people to Cairo because Hamas’s double dealing with Dahlan brought Abbas to his knees.

As for Sisi, Hamas has also played him – and the UAE.

Over the past few months, Hamas has been rebuilding its client relationship with Iran. A senior Hamas delegation visited Tehran last month for Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s swearing-in ceremony.

They met there with Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif and with senior Revolutionary Guards commanders.

A month earlier, senior Hamas terrorist Salah Arouri, who lives under Hezbollah protection in Beirut, paved the way for the reconciliation in a meeting under Hezbollah sponsorship with senior Revolutionary Guards commander Amir Abdollahian.

Following the meeting in Tehran, Hamas leader in Gaza Yahya Sinwar extolled Hamas’s relations with Iran as “fantastic.” Sinwar also said that Iran is “the largest backer financially and militarily” of Hamas’s terrorism apparatus.

Concerned about Tehran’s growing influence in Gaza, and through it, the Sinai, where Sisi continues to fight against an Islamic State-backed insurgency, Sisi has an interest in tempering Hamas’s client-ties to Tehran.

So just as Abbas has decided to restore financing to Hamas to keep Dahlan at bay, so Sisi has decided to embrace Hamas to keep Iran at bay.

In all cases, of course, Hamas wins.

The fact that Hamas has just won is obvious when we consider the unity deal it just concluded with Fatah.

Hamas made one concession. It agreed to break up its civil governing authority – a body it formed in response to Abbas’s decision to cut off funding in April. In exchange for agreeing to disband a body it only formed because Abbas cut off its funding, Hamas receives a full restoration of PA funding. The PA will fund all civil service operations in Gaza. It will pay the salaries of all civil servants and security personnel in Gaza. It will pay salaries to all Hamas terrorists Israel freed from its jails.

In other words, the PA will now be responsible for keeping the lights on and picking up the garbage.

And Hamas will be free to concentrate on preparing for and initiating its next terror war against Israel. It can dig tunnels. It can build missiles. It can expand its operational ties with Hezbollah, Islamic State, Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps and Fatah.

In the wake of Hamas’s leadership’s meetings in Tehran, Sinwar told reporters that Hamas is now moving full speed ahead toward doing all of these things. Sinwar said that Hamas is “developing our military strength in order to liberate Palestine.” He added, “Every day we build missiles and continue military training.”

Thousands of people, he said, are working “day and night” to prepare Hamas’s next terror war against Israel. And indeed, two weeks ago, two Hamas terrorists were killed when the tunnels they were digging collapsed on them.

Tuesday’s surrender ceremonies tell us two things.

First, the notion that Fatah is even remotely interested in defeating Hamas is complete nonsense. For 10 years since its forces were humiliated and routed in Gaza, Fatah has faithfully funded and defended Hamas. Abbas’s only concern is staying in charge of his Israeli-protected fiefdom in Ramallah. To this end, he will finance – with US and EU taxpayer monies – and defend another 10 Hamas wars with Israel.

The second lesson we learn from Hamas’s victory is that we need to curb our enthusiasm for Sisi and his regime in Egypt, and for his backers in the UAE. Sisi’s decision to facilitate and mediate Hamas’s newest victory over Fatah shows that his alliance with Israel is tactical and limited in scope. His decision to side with Israel against Hamas during Operation Protective Edge three years ago may not repeat itself in the next war.

Originally published by the Jerusalem Post


You can’t counter terrorism by defending it.

Countering Violent Extremism was one of the great counterterrorism frauds of the Obama era. Not only was CVE useless, but it was an excuse for building ties with assorted Muslim Brotherhood groups.

A week before President Trump’s inauguration, Jeh Johnson, Obama’s Secretary of Homeland Secretary, gave his allies one last gift with millions in CVE grants. The list of grantees included the Muslim American Leadership Alliance, Unity Productions Foundation and Ka Joog. Once Kelly took over at DHS, some were either removed or, like Ka Joog, claimed that they had opted out to protest the Muslim travel ban.

But when the final grantees were announced, two troubling organizations remained on the list: Peace Catalyst International and Masjid Muhammad.

Though it bills itself as the ‘Nation’s Mosque’, Masjid Muhammad was set up by the racist hate group known as the Nation of Islam which believed that white people were racially inferior. Lucius Bey Muhammad, who set it up, had said, “The black man is indeed the greatest. His genes are stronger! No white man can produce a baby darker than himself.”

Elijah Muhammad, whom the mosque’s site still praises, had allied with the American Nazi Party. He had preached that, “these enemies of Allah are known at the present as the white race”

While the branch of the movement represented by Masjid Muhammad has parted ways with Farrakhan’s Nation of Islam, they still maintain a relationship. At the mosque’s 53rd anniversary, Farrakhan’s personal representative phoned in with remarks.

Should Countering Violent Extremism funding be going to a mosque set up by violent extremists and which still seems unable to end all connections with one of the nation’s worst racist hate groups?

But the case of Peace Catalyst International is in some ways more troubling than Masjid Muhammad.

Peace Catalyst International claims to “create safe spaces and foster authentic relationships between Christians and Muslims”. While PCI strongly emphasizes its Christian identity, its agenda largely seems to involve propagandizing for Islamists. Sometimes to an extremely disturbing degree.

PCI boss Rick Love wrote, “Some Pakistanis do hate us for these reasons: the war in Afghanistan, the invasion of Iraq on false pretenses, decades-long support for oppressive regimes in the Muslim world, bias in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the killing of thousands of innocent Muslims described as ‘collateral damage’”.

PCI’s latest post is from Jennifer S. Bryson  and it includes a call to Christians to engage in “sacrificial listening” to Muslims.  Even if they’re ISIS supporters. Bryson heads the Zephyr Institute and its pet project, the Center for Islam and Religious Freedom. Also working at the Center for Islam is convicted Jihadist Ismail Royer. Bryson was formerly a member of the Board of Directors of PCI.

An earlier posting consists of PCI boss Rick Love interviewing Imam Taha Hassane who urges readers to understand “the roots of terrorism”. “When we drop drones on innocent people in Yemen, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and kill innocent civilians, what do we expect these people to think about us?” Hassane says. Rick and the Imam then discuss how supporting Black Lives Matter is Sharia.

This isn’t opposing extremism. It’s making excuses for it while echoing its talking points. And that sums up much of what is already wrong with CVE.

Love had already signed a letter claiming that “support of the Black Lives Matter movement demonstrates the truth that the Word became flesh.”

Rick Love has been criticized before for his flirtation with Islamist groups. On his own site, Love insists that Jihad is inner struggle or defensive warfare, that Mohammed did not spread Islam through the sword and that, “Islamic law in practice, however, is mostly relegated to family status law.”

An article at Peace Catalyst International insists, “You do NOT need to be fearful about Sharia taking over America.”

“The US Constitution is upheld in courts. No Muslim organization has ever called for it to become subordinate to Sharia, and that’s not even something American Muslims want.”

This is the sort of distorted reality that could just as easily come from any Islamist organization.

“Islam isn’t in America to be equal to any other faith, but to become dominant. The Koran … should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on Earth,” CAIR co-founder Omar Ahmad had declared.

“I wouldn’t want to create the impression that I wouldn’t like the government of the United States to be Islamic sometime in the future,” CAIR co-founder Ibrahm Hooper had admitted.

Peace Catalyst International ought to know as it collaborates with CAIR.

But there is another area that makes Peace Catalyst International’s CVE grant deeply troubling. On the same page where Love denies that Jihad is anything but personal or defensive, he also writes, “The issue of jihad for the sake of Palestine has gained lots of traction among many Muslims internationally.”

One of Peace Catalyst International’s “favorite peaceworkers” is Sami Awad whom the organization has worked with and promoted.

Awad is an anti-Israel BDS activist often praised for his non-violence. That non-violence is a pose. On his own blog, Sami Awad writes that a demonstration “is not a substitute for the armed struggle”.

He describes Islamic terrorism as, “The Palestinian armed resistance, labeled ‘terrorism’ by Israel.”

Awad also insists that, “The struggle to end the occupation and establish an independent Palestinian state does not gain or lose legitimacy if nonviolent means are preferred over violent means and vice versa.” Non-violence, like terrorism, is a tactic. It’s a means to achieve the same ends.

At one point, Awad even claimed that, “We’ve actually done training in non-violence for Hamas leaders.”

Rick Love’s own position isn’t subtle. In response to a question as to whether he prefers, Coexistence or Coresistance, he endorses “Coresistance”. That’s a euphemism for hostility to Israel over peacemaking. When an organization with “peace” in its time picks resistance over coexistence, it’s revealing.

It’s hard to see any of this as countering violent extremism. Instead it seems to be aiding it.

Peace Catalyst International doesn’t push back against Islamism. Instead it lies about it. It follows the usual leftist line that Islamic terrorism is the work of a tiny minority who ought to be disregarded. It denies the linkage between Islamic teachings and Islamic violence.

That is the standard CVE position. And there is no reason for it to be funded in the Trump era.

And DHS should really not be in the business of providing legitimacy to Peace Catalyst International’s anti-Israel activism, which includes supporting BDS activists.

But the problem with Countering Violent Extremism was always in the name. Not only is its name a deliberate effort to avoid using the “I word”, but the issue isn’t mere violence. And, as Sami Awad and Rick Love tragically show us, the solution isn’t to be found with tactical displays of non-violence.

The core issue isn’t violence. It’s Islamic supremacism. The violence is just a natural symptom.

The Muslim Brotherhood’s Islamist takeover in Egypt wasn’t accomplished through suicide bombings. The Brotherhood won an election. But once in power, it persecuted Christians. And before long, its followers had embarked on a series of attacks on churches.

Tactical non-violence combines virtue signaling with support for terrorists. It’s an abomination that should be disavowed by anyone who genuinely believes in non-violence as a principle, not a tactic.

The Islamic conquests were accompanied by clever tactics of divide and conquer. Muslim warlords pitted Christians against each other, promising one Christian denomination protection against another. The Islamists working to conquer the West are once again cleverly making inroads among their Christian and Jewish enemies. And any move to counter Islamism should oppose such groups, not fund them.

Originally Posted on FrontpageMag.