Archive for April 2nd, 2008

A Bit of Wisdom From Our Friend Mike In Israel

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2008

I always enjoy reading Mike’s blog. He is an Oleh (a Jew immigrant to Israel) living in the central Galil of northern Israel. Here are some of his insights on what makes a terrorist tick and how to make them stop ticking.

A year ago, we all know, the Bush administration sent 30,000 additional troops to Iraq, and instructed the field commanders to conduct an aggressive counter-insurgency operation. There was fierce fighting for a while, and then things quieted down… We heard a lot of noise about the success of the “surge” (what stupid name for that strategy!), and a lot of people, myself included, said that the Army had found the path to eventual victory. As John McCain has pointed out, however, that path is long and winding, and the events of this past week bear that out.

We know what has happened: a general uprising of Shi’ite militias in Baghdad and Basra, and the general inability of the Iraqi Army to deal with it. What is less obvious, but should be crystal clear, is that this sudden increase in violence, sparked and calmed by Shi’ite leader Moqtada al-Sadr, coincided with the removal of 5 combat brigades from the American forces.

Let’s repeat this: as the US forces begin to scale back, the violence scales up. And the violence ended, not because of any military action by US or Iraqi forces, but because of al-Sadr’s orders to his militia.

I think the message is clear: the Iraqi government controls whatever the US Army controls. The militias have the rest.

Al-Sadr pulled his guys back, not to avoid a fight, but because he’d made his point. He controls the violence or lack thereof in Iraq, and now the new Iraqi government knows it.

Does that mean that the US increase in troops last year has failed? Or that it never succeeded in the first place? I would say both yes and no.

Important gains were made, and the increase in troops made a differnce. Al-Qaeda in Iraq is on the run, and al-Sadr accepted a cease-fire at the time because he knew he couldn’t win a fight. So yes, the increase in US force impressed the terrorists, and scared them silent for a while. But now that the US forces are startign to scale down, the terrorists are starting to get bolder. We’ve seen the same thing here in Israel: when the IDF pushes into Gaza, Hamas screams “Cease-fire,” but when the IDF pulls out, the “cease-fire” goes out the window.

The equation is simple: push the terrorists hard, and they cry “uncle” for the sake of world opinion, but loosen the pressure, and they start hitting back. It would seem clear then, that if you really want to beat the terrorist, you need to hit them when they’re crying for peace. After all, their business is violence, and they only cry for peace when they’re losing. So give them peace, but only after the fight is won.

And that’s the real lesson of last week’s fighting in Iraq.

Original Link.

McDonald’s CEO: Company Will Fully Support Gay Agenda

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2008

According to McDonald’s CEO Jim Skinner, McDonald’s will aggressively promote the homosexual agenda. In remarks on McDonald’s Web site concerning the company becoming a member of the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC), Skinner wrote: “Being a socially responsible organization is a fundamental part of who we are. We have an obligation to use our size and resources to make a difference in the world … and we do.”

The company gave an undisclosed amount of money to the NGLCC in return for being recognized as a major promoter of the homosexual agenda. In return, NGLCC placed Richard Ellis, vice president of communications of McDonald’s USA, on the NGLCC Board of Directors.

Ellis was quoted as saying: “I’m thrilled to join the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce team and ready to get to work. I share the NGLCC’s passion for business growth and development within the LGBT community, and I look forward to playing a role in moving these important initiatives forward.”

McDonald’s refused to comment to World Net Daily on the placement of its executive on the board of the “gay” advocacy organization but did send an e-mail confirming the corporation’s support for the agenda of the homosexual business lobby.

“McDonald’s is indeed a Corporate Partner and Organizational Ally of NGLCC. Our vice president of U.S. communications, Richard Ellis, was recently elected to its board of directors,” said Heidi M. Barker, senior director of media relations for McDonald’s. NGLCC describes itself as promoting the LGBT community first and always, including same sex marriage.

NGLCC gives credit to sponsors such as McDonald’s for its financial and other support that helps in its work. “Through the commitment of our corporate partners, the NGLCC has been able to advance the ideas and causes of the LGBT business community,” the Chamber said.

YouTube Warned to Remove Koran Film

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2008

(CNSNews.com) – The government of the world’s most populous Islamic state says YouTube has two days to take down a Dutch lawmaker’s provocative film on the Koran or it will block access to the popular video-sharing Web site.

The warning by Indonesia came as the U.N.’s primary human rights watchdog ended a month-long session amid allegations by Western member-states and non-governmental organizations that Islamic nations are working to curtail free speech.

Geert Wilder’s 16-minute film linking Islam’s revered text with terrorism has sparked protests in a number of countries. It also drew criticism from the Arab League, the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) and the European Union.

In Indonesia, a former Dutch colony, Information Minister Mohammad Nuh told a press briefing in Jakarta Tuesday he had sent a letter to YouTube demanding the film, “Fitna,” be removed. If it did not comply, he said, the government in cooperation with Internet service providers would block the site.

As of early Wednesday afternoon Indonesian time, attempts to view at least one earlier-available upload of the movie on YouTube brought up a message saying, “This video has been removed due to terms of use violation.”

But the film has been uploaded on YouTube by multiple users and can still be found with a simple search in both its English and Dutch versions.

In response to queries, a YouTube spokesperson said the site allows people “to express themselves and to communicate with a global audience.”

“The diversity of the world in which we live — spanning the vast dimensions of ethnicity, religion, nationality, language, political opinion, gender, and sexual orientation, to name a few — means that some of the beliefs and views of some individuals may offend others,” she said.

Videos that breach YouTube guidelines are removed, and some graphic material is restricted if not suitable for all audiences, the spokesperson added.

Wilders first uploaded Fitna late last week on a British video-sharing site, LiveLeak, where several million views were recorded before the company took it down, citing threats against its staff.

LiveLeak later lifted the suspension, saying it had tightened security measures, only to have Wilders himself withdraw the film, saying he planned to edit it because of copyright infringement complaints, and would upload an amended version later.

By then, however, the film – which includes a mix of images of terror attacks, verses from the Koran, and menacing quotes by radical clerics and others – was already available on numerous other sites on the Internet, including YouTube.

Original Link.

Prominent Islamic Cleric: Innocent Non-Muslims Deserve to Be Punished, For Not Being Muslims

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2008

More tolerance from the so-called “tolerant and loving” Muslims.

A report posted on Islam Watch, a site run by Muslims who oppose intolerant teachings and hatred for unbelievers, exposes a prominent Islamic cleric and lawyer who support extreme punishment for non-Muslims — including killing and rape.

A question-and-answer session with Imam Abdul Makin in an East London mosque asks why Allah would tell Muslims to kill and rape innocent non-Muslims, including their wives and daughters, according to Islam Watch.

“Because non-Muslims are never innocent, they are guilty of denying Allah and his prophet,” the Imam says, according to the report. “If you don’t believe me, here is the legal authority, the top Muslim lawyer of Britain.”

The lawyer, Anjem Choudary, backs up the Imam’s position, saying that all Muslims are innocent.

“You are innocent if you are a Muslim,” Choudary tells the BBC. “Then you are innocent in the eyes of God. If you are not a Muslim, then you are guilty of not believing in God.”

Choudary said he would not condemn a Muslim for any action.

“As a Muslim, I must support my Muslim brothers and sisters,” Choudary said. “I must have hatred to everything that is not Muslim.”

Original Link.

School Sued After Restricting Student’s Religious Freedom

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2008

Yet another case of a school restricting a student’s freedom of religious expression.
What amazes me about this case is that the school officials feel they have the power and authority to trump the First Amendment of the United States Constitution; the Law of the Land. Where do educators get this puffed up sense of self importance? Amazing.
Let me reiterate this once again:
The Constitution does not guarantee the right for people not to be offended. What it does guarantee is the right to freely express ones religion. No one, certainly not a school, has the right or the authority to say otherwise. This statement shows just how pompous and arrogant these school officials are:
“Millin (the art teacher. -ed.) showed the student a policy for the class that prohibited any violence, blood, sexual connotations or religious beliefs in artwork. The lawsuit claims Millin told the boy he had signed away his constitutional rights when he signed the policy at the beginning of the semester.
Signed away his constitutional rights? Are they serious? Again, a perfect example of the pompous and arrogant attitude shown by today’s liberal educators.

MADISON, Wis. — A Tomah High School student has filed a federal lawsuit alleging his art teacher censored his drawing because it featured a cross and a biblical reference.

The lawsuit alleges other students were allowed to draw “demonic” images and asks a judge to declare a class policy prohibiting religion in art unconstitutional.

“We hear so much today about tolerance,” said David Cortman, an attorney with the Alliance Defense Fund, a Christian legal advocacy group representing the student. “But where is the tolerance for religious beliefs? The whole purpose of art is to reflect your own personal experience. To tell a student his religious beliefs can legally be censored sends the wrong message.”

Tomah School District Business Manager Greg Gaarder said the district hadn’t seen the lawsuit and declined to comment.

According to the lawsuit, the student’s art teacher asked his class in February to draw landscapes. The student, a senior identified in the lawsuit by the initials A.P., added a cross and the words “John 3:16 A sign of love” in his drawing.

His teacher, Julie Millin, asked him to remove the reference to the Bible, saying students were making remarks about it. He refused, and she gave him a zero on the project.

Millin showed the student a policy for the class that prohibited any violence, blood, sexual connotations or religious beliefs in artwork. (another example where a group is lumping religion in with items that are clearly evil and bad. -ed.) The lawsuit claims Millin told the boy he had signed away his constitutional rights when he signed the policy at the beginning of the semester.

The boy tore the policy up in front of Millin, who kicked him out of class. Later that day, assistant principal Cale Jackson told the boy his religious expression infringed on other students’ rights.

Jackson told the boy, his stepfather and his pastor at a meeting a week later that religious expression could be legally censored in class assignments. Millin stated at the meeting the cross in the drawing also infringed on other students’ rights.

The boy received two detentions for tearing up the policy. Jackson referred questions about the lawsuit to Gaarder.

Sometime after that meeting, the boy’s metals teacher rejected his idea to build a chain-mail cross, telling him it was religious and could offend someone, the lawsuit claims. The boy decided in March to shelve plans to make a pin with the words “pray” and “praise” on it because he was afraid he’d get a zero for a grade.

The lawsuit also alleges school officials allow other religious items and artwork to be displayed on campus.

A Buddha and Hindu figurines are on display in a social studies classroom, the lawsuit claims, adding the teacher passionately teaches Hindu principles to students.

In addition, a replica of Michaelangelo’s “The Creation of Man” is displayed at the school’s entrance, a picture of a six-limbed Hindu deity is in the school’s hallway and a drawing of a robed sorcerer hangs on a hallway bulletin board.

Drawings of Medusa, the Grim Reaper with a scythe and a being with a horned head and protruding tongue hang in the art room and demonic masks are displayed in the metals room, the lawsuit alleges.

A.P. suffered unequal treatment because of his religion even though student expression is protected by the First Amendment, according to the lawsuit, which was filed Friday.

“Students do not shed their constitutional rights at the schoolhouse gate,” the lawsuit said. “No compelling state interest exists to justify the censorship of A.P.’s religious expression.”

Original Link.