Archive for August 9th, 2006

Iran Hints at Aug. 22 Doomsday for Israel

Wednesday, August 9th, 2006

It wouldn’t surprise me at all if the rabid leader of Iran didn’t try something like this.

Noted Middle Eastern scholar Bernard Lewis warns that Iran is preparing for an apocalyptic “end of time” – and that it could come as soon as August 22.
The July 28 edition of NewsMax’s Insider Report pointed to the connection between that date, when Iran leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said his country would respond to Western demands regarding Iran’s nuclear program, and a possible attack on Israel.
Now Lewis, professor emeritus of Near Eastern Studies at Princeton, writes about that scenario. He notes in the Wall Street Journal that this year, August 22 corresponds, in the Islamic calendar, to the night when Muhammad flew first to “the farthest mosque” – usually identified with Jerusalem – and then to heaven and back.
“This might well be deemed an appropriate date for the apocalyptic ending of Israel and if necessary the world,” writes Lewis, whose most recent book is “From Babel to Dragomans: Interpreting the Middle East.”
He also points to an intriguing reason why the Iranians might not fret at all about an Israeli counterstrike – even with nuclear weapons.
What deterred both sides from using nuclear weapons during the Cold War was the concept of MAD, mutual assured destruction. But the “apocalyptic worldview” of Iran’s current leaders works against that concept, according to Lewis.
Ahmadinejad is a strong believer in the Shiite tradition of a 12th imam, the so-called “hidden” Imam Mahdi who Allah has miraculously kept alive since his disappearance in 874 A.D.
Shiites believe Imam Mahdi will return at a time of great global chaos – and the Web site Zionist.com states: “Ahmadinejad sees himself as Allah’s instrument to pave the way for Imam Mahdi.”
According to Lewis, Ahmadinejad and his followers “clearly believe that this time is now.”

Original Link.

Television news helping Hezbollah

Wednesday, August 9th, 2006

Time to start censoring the news coming out of Israel.

HAIFA, Israel – Hezbollah monitors Israeli and international television news footage of scenes from rocket landings inside Israel and has used the broadcasts the past few weeks to more accurately target installations in the Jewish state, a senior terror leader told WorldNetDaily.
Israeli TV and international news outlets such as Fox News, BBC, CNN and SkyNews have been regularly broadcasting, many times live, from the aftermath of Hezbollah rocket attacks on northern Israel.
“Of course the constant stream of television news is helpful for Hezbollah to know whether they hit targets and the location of strategic facilities. A whole department of Hezbollah [in part] monitors this footage,” said Abu Oudai, who is a chief of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades terror group’s rocket infrastructure in the West Bank.
The Al Aqsa Brigades, the declared “military wing” of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah party, is responsible for scores of shooting attacks, rocket launchings and, together with Islamic Jihad, every suicide bombing inside Israel the past two years.
Israel says senior Brigades leaders, particularly the group’s cell in Nablus in the northern West Bank, coordinate their attacks with Hezbollah and receive funding from Iran and Syria funneled through Hezbollah channels. Several Brigades leaders have spoken openly to WorldNetDaily about their group’s affiliation with Hezbollah.
Since Israel started its military campaign in Lebanon last month following a Hezbollah attack, the Lebanese militia has fired more than 3,100 rockets into northern Israeli cities, including into Haifa, the country’s third largest. About one-third of the Israeli population is under rocket threat. Forty-nine Israelis have been killed so far by Hezbollah rocket attacks.
While Hezbollah projectiles lack guidance systems, the rockets are launched from specific areas in Lebanon using a rocket’s known trajectory and travel distance to score hits on particular Israeli sites.
Israeli security officials say they have been surprised by the accuracy of Hezbollah’s rocket attacks. Several Katyushas have scored direct hits on Israeli military installations and other strategic facilities. Last weekend, 12 Israeli soldiers were killed and another 12 were wounded by a Hezbollah rocket attack on a military post at Kfar Giladi in the Upper Galilee.
Abu Oudai, an Al Aqsa rocket chief, told WorldNetDaily that Hezbollah has a “communications department” of hundreds of “officers” who monitor the media, Israeli society and military movements and transmissions.
He said the department is consists of both civilian and military monitoring. The military section attempts to eavesdrop on Israeli military installations and communications. He said the civilian section, among other things, translates the speeches of Israeli leaders and monitors the Israeli and international media.
“Of course Hezbollah uses some of the television footage to help look at Israeli facilities and get better aim,” Abu Oudai said. “Especially the Israeli news, which covers the rocket attacks so extensively and broadcasts from the scenes all day.”
Abu Oudai admitted if news outlets regularly broadcast footage from the scenes of his group’s firing of Palestinian Qassam rockets into Israel “it would be very helpful to us also.”
Hezbollah publicly has boasted it has a communications department that employs 120 officers in shifts around the clock to monitor Israeli society and the Jewish state’s military.
Israel says Hezbollah has been trained by Iran on methods of intelligence gathering and electronic communications.

Original Link.

AP, N.Y. Times raising the dead?

Wednesday, August 9th, 2006

The amount of false information coming out of Lebanon at the hands of the Mainstream News Media (MSM’s) is just incredible. At best the MSM’s are inept, at worse, they are using every trick in the book to demonize Israel and support the Hezbollah terrorist.

An Associated Press photograph of a “dead man” who is sitting upright underneath a sheet and a New York Times series that appears to have one man as both rescuer and victim are prompting more questions about U.S. media coverage of the Mideast conflict.
The AP photo shows half a dozen “bodies” in a row on the ground and covered by sheets, with what appears to be a young boy standing on some rubble in the background.
It is among the latest U.S. media photographs of the Mideast war to fall under suspicion. Another photograph of a “body” that was described by the New York Times as having been pulled from the dusty rubble of a building, although there was no dust on the body, also was being reviewed.
The AP caption described the scene as bodies of Lebanese residents in the southern village of Oana. They are, the caption says, “laid covered after they were removed from under the rubble of a demolished building … that was struck by Israeli war plane missiles.”
Notice the flexed leg muscles, absence of dust on the body and the hat tucked between his arm and chest in this New York Times photograph
But on the website for Jihad Watch, the photograph was posted with the notation “AP raises the dead!”
“What? Don’t dead men sit up?” said one blogger on the site run by Mideast expert Robert Spencer. In addition to directing the website, he’s the author of “The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam,” “Islam Unveiled: Disturbing Questions About the World’s Fasting-Growing Faith” and other books.
Notice the similarity in the muscular build, the features, and the hat in this additional photograph
The questions come just days after another international wire service, Reuters, withdrew hundreds of photographs from its archive that were contributed by a single photographer. That happened after there were allegations a picture of Beirut after an attack in the war between the terrorist Hezbollah organization and the Israeli military was altered.
The photographers who criticized the photograph said it blatantly was manipulated to add black smoke to the scene.
The Reuters photographer was suspended during his company’s investigation but officials said they have a no-tolerance policy for manipulating digital photographs.
On the Ynetnews.com site, the Reuters agency said “photo editing software was improperly used on this image.”
“Reuters takes such matters extremely seriously as it is strictly against company editorial policy to alter pictures,” said Reuters spokeswoman Moira Whittle.
Charles Johnson, of the Little Green Footballs blog, said the evidence of digital manipulation of the image was “blatant.” His site is known for opening the floodgates on the forged documents about President Bush.
AP said on its website that it delivers more than 1,000 photos a day from events as they happen.
In the case of the Times, a photograph on the GatewayPundit blog shows a “body” allegedly pulled from the dusty rubble of a building, only there’s no dust on the man’s body. In fact, the muscles of his leg appeared to be flexed as if holding himself in position.
The caption said the local mayor was appealing to the Israelis to allow authorities time to pull the bodies out of the rubble because they were still buried.
However, the body even holds a hat tucked between his arm and his chest.
And other photographs in a series published that day appear to show the same person walking around and helping as a rescuer, not a victim.

Original Link.

Child Exploitation Escalating, Says Justice Department

Wednesday, August 9th, 2006

What a sickening statement about the morality of society. I hope that law enforcement can make a difference, but I would say that they probably can’t. The reason we are at this point is a lack of moral absolutes in society. No matter how hard we try, we cannot legislate morality.

(CNSNews.com) – While touting recent federal and local law enforcement initiatives to combat child exploitation, the U.S. Department of Justice along with the FBI and National Center for Missing and Exploited Children say the problem is “escalating.”
“I think it is fair to say children are in more danger than ever before from child exploitation,” said Drew Oosterbaan, chief of the Justice Department’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section.
“We see child pornography escalating, not just in terms of numbers, not just in the amount or frequency of distribution of child pornography we see, but most especially in the nature of the child pornography we see,” he said, noting that there are more images of children being violently raped and abused.
Ernie Allen, president and chief executive officer of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, added that one in five girls and one in ten boys are sexually abused by age 18.
“Kids are the most victimized sector of the American public,” said Allen. But with only a third of the cases being reported, he added, “This is largely a case of hidden victims.”
Oosterbaan said despite the size of the problem, “the response is also unprecedented.”
“We’re going to make sure every inch of this country is covered to protect against this problem,” he said.
Law enforcement will be using abduction teams devoted to finding kidnapped children as quickly as possible; newer technology that will enable them to have a more targeted search area for a child; and increased efforts to crack down on domestic child prostitution, child pornography Internet child predators.
Allen said his group is working to “eradicate child pornography by 2008.”
But Daniel Weiss, senior analyst for media and sexuality for Focus on the Family, said the Justice Department isn’t doing enough. “Children are not being exploited in a vacuum. They’re being exploited in a vast culture of exploitation,” said Weiss.
“There are some very positive developments, but I think that we are still disappointed, even dismayed at the almost total inattention to enforcing federal obscenity laws,” Weiss told Cybercast News Service. “And the reason that concerns us so much is far more kids are exposed to hard core pornography online than are ever abducted or used for child pornography, as heinous and horrendous as that is.
“We are allowing illegal material that commodifies adults, basically to proliferate. When you allow anyone to become a sexual commodity it isn’t too much of a stretch for that to include children. I think that has led to more child exploitation,” Weiss added.

Original Link.

NEA Member Troubled by National Union’s Liberal Political Activism

Wednesday, August 9th, 2006

OK, parents, this is the organization that most of your kid’s teachers belong to. Take a close look at what they are advocating teaching your children and see if you agree. If you don’t, then it’s time to take an active role in your child’s education. That means to go to the parent teacher meetings and ask the “difficult” questions, about the curriculum, despite the sometimes angry looks you get from some of the other parents, and the ambiguous answers the school administrators will try to give you.

(AgapePress) – An endorsement of same-sex “marriage” was not the only political statement that angered conservative members of the National Education Association (NEA) at the teachers union’s convention last month in Orlando, Florida.
At that meeting, 50 NEA delegates submitted a legislative amendment (7) calling for an immigration policy that “rejects the criminalization of undocumented immigrants and those who work with them, especially educators.” Amendment 7, which is now in the hands of the NEA’s Legislative Committee, also advocates “a path to citizenship” or “permanent residency” for illegal aliens.
Ohio teacher Judy Bruns, an eight-year delegate to the national NEA convention, calls the proposed amendment “embarrassingly presumptuous.” She believes this measure and others like it overstep the organization’s proper scope and purpose.
“I feel that, in a number of cases, at least in recent years when I’ve been at the NEA assembly, that the union is getting involved in things that it shouldn’t be involved in,” Bruns says. And in so doing, she asserts, the powerful union seems to be “rather assuming more knowledge about such things than our national government.”
The Ohio educator says she was also troubled to learn that another NEA amendment (B1) says early childhood education programs should include “diversity-based curricula” that are accepting of homosexuality. She feels homosexual activism has become a high priority for the union.
“The GLBT Caucus within the NEA is one of the most powerful caucuses within the NEA,” Bruns observes. “The influence that the GLBT Caucus has had is just pervasive,” she notes, “and GLBT wording and rights are just all over the place in our resolutions document.”
At the union’s 2006 annual convention in July, one of the year’s NEA Human and Civil Rights Awards was given to Brian Guehring, who created the Pride Players Theater Group, a student drama group comprised of 100 homosexual and heterosexual students around Omaha, Nebraska.
Guehring was also honored for establishing 14 Gay-Straight Alliances in schools. And two years ago, the NEA gave the Human and Civil Rights Award to Kevin Jennings, founder of the homosexual activist group GLSEN, the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network.
Also, Bruns says Brent McKim, the co-chairman of the NEA’s Resolutions Committee, told her that the national teachers union does not only support same-sex marriage in states where it is legal, but is also an advocate for legally married homosexuals who want to adopt, even if their state bans homosexual adoption.

Original Link.

‘Bible Billboard’ Case Being Heard Today in The Big Apple

Wednesday, August 9th, 2006

This is an interesting case. It basically comes down to the question “is the Bible bigoted” when verses are directly quoted that are in direct conflict with current social mores. If the courts find that it is, then this is the biggest attack against religion that has happened in the United States. The clearly defined religious rights guaranteed by the United States Constitution are being eclipsed by the homosexual agenda imposed by activist courts., Homosexual “rights” are not, by the way, ever mentioned as being protected by the constitution. Freedom of Speech and Freedom of Religion are protected by the Constitution.

Billboard
A reproduction of Keyword Ministries’ billboard in New York

(AgapePress) – A federal appeals court in New York will once again be hearing arguments in a case involving a church in Staten Island that was banned from displaying a billboard because it contained a Bible verse condemning homosexuality.
In 2000, a church called Keyword Ministries contracted to post a billboard on Staten Island containing one scripture verse in four translations — “Thou shalt not lie with mankind as with womankind. It is abomination” (Leviticus 18:22, KJV). The billboard was signed: “I AM your Creator.” (See earlier article)
After a great deal of public outcry, the president of the borough publicly said the billboard served no useful purpose and was essentially “hate speech.” He then wrote a letter to the billboard company, arguing the sign was a message of intolerance and “not welcome” in the borough. Later the sign company took it down.
In September 2000, the Center for Law & Policy (CLP) — the legal arm of the American Family Association — filed a lawsuit on behalf of the church, claiming a government entity exercised its influence to suppress free speech. The suit has been dismissed twice by the federal district court for the Eastern District of New York. It is being heard again today (August 8 ) before the Second U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
Mike DePrimo, senior litigation counsel for the CLP, is appearing before the Second Circuit to present the case. He says the case is a clear-cut example of religious censorship. “The city cited their anti-discrimination law as the basis for their action,” DePrimo explains. “They essentially said that stating that homosexuality is a sin violated laws against intolerance.”
In fact, however, the city was promoting religious intolerance, says the attorney. “What we like about the case is that this is not the pastor’s personal sentiments; this is pure scripture,” DePrimo says. “He simply quoted the scriptures [and] put them up on the billboard. And, essentially, the city’s attack is on the Holy Bible; it’s not on religious speech as such. It’s on the Holy Bible itself.”
In a press release the legal group says it intends to question whether it is constitutionally permissible to characterize the Bible as “bigoted” and to condemn it as conveying “a message of intolerance that is not welcome” in New York City. CLP chief counsel Steve Crampton, also in New York to argue the case, believes the case is an example of the continuing attack on religious freedoms in the U.S.
“This case presents the clearest example yet of the continuing erosion of the constitutional protections for churches and religion against the incessant onslaught of the homosexual agenda,” says Crampton. “The actions of the city communicated unequivocally that traditional religious beliefs about homosexuality will be censored, even when simply quoting scripture.”
The CLP attorneys say if they fail in today’s bid before the Second Circuit, they intend to appeal the case to the U.S. Supreme Court. The case is Okwedy v. Molinari.

Original Link.

“JEW HATRED, THE U.N., AND REDEMPTION” by Fern Sidman

Wednesday, August 9th, 2006

Since the current war began between Hezbollah terrorists and the State of Israel on July 12th, it has been reported by The Jewish Agency that there has been a dramatic rise in anti-semitic incidents directly related to mounting tensions in the Middle East. According to Ynet News, “During the past two weeks, at least 50 anti-Semitic incidents were recorded around the world, ten of which were violent. The most extreme incident occurred July 28th, when a Muslim-American of Pakistani origin went on a shooting spree in a Jewish Federation building in Seattle, killing one woman and wounding five more.

Since the start of the war in Lebanon, Jews, Israelis and Jewish landmarks across the world have been victims of a wave of anti-Semitic attacks: In Turkey two Israeli families were assaulted when merchants learned of their country of origin; a Jewish Community Center was brutally attacked in Australia; a youth vandalized an Oslo synagogue and defecated at the entrance; and in Brazil a synagogue was sprayed with the slogan, ‘Lebanon – the real Holocaust.”

The report goes on to say that, “recent reports received by the Jewish Agency reveal a difficult picture of an exacerbation of anti-Semitic incidents. Many mass demonstrations worldwide against Israeli policy in Lebanon have descended into violence and unruly incitement against local Jewish communities. Most of the incidents occurred in countries with large populations of Lebanese, Arab and Muslim immigrants. At many of the anti-Israeli protests, demonstrators have waved Hizbullah flags and swastikas and called out slogans comparing IDF soldiers to Nazi storm troopers. The JA further noted that the offices of numerous Jewish communities have reported receiving threatening emails. ”

The revelation of these disturbing facts deserves closer examiniation. It would appear that the rise in anti-semitic incidents is directly related to multiple factors. It is clear that Hezbollah, aided by the worldwide media has launched a highly successful propoganda campaign aimed at discrediting Israel, of portraying Israel as a mammoth and ruthless murder machine bent on wanton destruction with no regard for “civilian” lives in Lebanon. While we know that the contrary is true and Israel takes great pains to minimize civilian deaths and casualties, little can be done to harness the deep seated malevolance that the media and the world has for Jews and Israel. Jew hatred is alive and well as it always has been. Those haters of Jews and Israel need little persuasion as an excuse to manifest their vitriol towards Israel and we can expect much more of the same.

The world remains silent in the face of this banal form of racism, because as students of Jewish history know full well, the Jew has no real allies and the eyebrows of the world are never raised when it comes to confronting Jew bashers. The world stood silent during the Holocaust as it stands silent now. It would be delusional to believe that their will be a impassioned outcry from the world. We are alone and it is best to get used to it.

Speaking of being alone, it also comes as no surprise that on the diplomatic front, the moribund United Nations are busying themselves with condeming Israel and concocting resolutions that will demand that Israeli troops withdraw from Lebanon before Hezbollah terrorists are defeated. There is talk of having an impotent Lebanese army replace Israeli troops in southern Lebanon. Talk about having the fox watching the hen house. Let us remember that a great majority of the Lebanese army are supporters of Hezbollah as are the current leaders of the ostensible democracy that calls itself the current government of Lebanon.

We must never forget that Hezbollah representatives are members of the Lebanese parliament. Let us never forget that a great majority of the Lebanese population are steadfast and loyal Hezbollah supporters. Let us never forget that no international peacekeeping force can quell the Syrian and Iranian backed Hezbollah terrorists. They are a well funded and thoroughly trained army of highly skilled militia who are driven by deeply held religious beliefs and passions and are dedicated to spreading their own brand of Islamic facism.

While the agenda of the United States is to support Lebanon’s fledgling “democracy”, this will be no easy task. If the United States has learned anything from its involvement in Iraq is that imposing a democracy on a people that does not desire it can be the recipe for civil war, death and destruction. Creating a new world order in the Middle East will be an arduous, if not impossible goal. Hezbollah’s agenda on the other hand is to create yet another Islamic state in Lebanon, ruled by Shiite Muslims. Their agenda is one that is within their grasp and within the realm of reality.

The people of Lebanon would clearly welcome a stronger Hezbollah presence in government and in the military. In the eyes of the Lebanese people, Hezbollah is the brave and courageous underdog. A voice of strength and truth and an organization that has a credible track record of helping the Lebanese Shiite population, in the form of providing social services that the people have relied on. Hezbollah has won the hearts and loyalty of its following and they can smell victory. With the exception of the United States, Hezbollah has the support of the world.

The question has been raised as to whether Israel can still win this war. Every day over 140 Katyusha rockets still rain upon Israeli towns and cities on its northern border, and the death toll rapidly climbs. A Hezbollah drone aimed at Tel Aviv was intercepted by Israel this time, but who knows what will occur on their next attempt at mass destruction and genocide. There is no question that the handling of this military operation has been less than adequate.
At this moment the Knesset is discussing the possiblity of a larger, more massive ground offensive.

Time is running short and the hesitation and confusion of the Israeli government has put the Jewish State between a rock and a hard place. Hindsight is always 20/20, however had the government of Israel been able to quash its fear of world opinion and had engaged in a massive ground offensive at the beginning of this conflict, perhaps the situation might look brighter for an Israeli victory over Hezbollah terrorism. The events that will unfold in the days ahead will be crucial in the outcome for Israel.

There is no question that we are living in the times of “Chevlei Moshiach”, the birthpangs of the coming of our righteous Messiah. We have witnssed prophecies unfold before our very eyes. We must remember that all is not bleak. Birthpangs can be painful and protracted or they can come swiftly with relatively little pain. It is all in our hands. It is imcumbent upon the Jewish people to be actively involved in becoming the harbingers of the redemption. We are obliged to place our faith and trust in the Almighty G-d of Israel and to become devoted to His Torah and His commandments.

We are commanded to fear only G-d and to not fear our enemies. It is time for the entire nation of Israel to speak with one collective voice, and with great resolve and determination to declare to the world that we demand that our government use all of its powers to destroy and annihliate our enemies. There is no time for guilt and apologies, rather it is a time to plunge into battle with the goal of the ultimate preservation of the Jewish nation. It is time to know in our hearts that we are commanded by G-d not to fear our enemies, for the Almighty G-d of Israel will be with is. Moshiach is knocking and kicking on the door, it is up to us to let him in. Salvation is in our hands if we only seek it.

In the difficult days ahead let us beseech the Almighty G-d of Israel to gird His nation Israel with strength. May our fervent prayers reach the gates of Heaven and may we merit to see victory and salvation.

———————————————-

Fern Sidman holds a B.A, in political science from Brooklyn College. She was the educational coordinator for the Betar Youth Movement in the late 1970s and early 1980s. She was national director of the Jewish Defense League from 1983-1985. She was a researcher for several books written by Rabbi Meir Kahane, ZTK”L. She was the managing editor of the publication entitled, The Voice of Judea, and is a regular contributor to its web site. She is currently a writer and journalist living in New York City. Her articles have appeared in The Jewish Press, The Jewish Advocate, The Jewish Journal of Los Angeles, and numerous Jewish and general web sites including, Front Page Magazine, Daniel Pipes and Michael Freund.

Added CAPTCHA to the Blog

Wednesday, August 9th, 2006

Hello Everyone.
Well, I added a CAPTCHA (completely automated public Turing test to tell computers and humans apart) to the blog comments yesterday. Our spam rate fell from 200 to 1,000 spams per day to zero. I apologize for making everyone go through an additional step to post comments, but the upside of this is that now I can relax the “links per post” rule restriction.
Thanks,
-Steve