SNAKE HUNTERS

An Informative Weblog

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Location: Oak Ridge, Tennessee, United States

Eighty-nine year old fledgling Editor of Snake Hunters. Combat Veteran of WWII, 10th Mountain Division, Italy. AAU Swim Coach, 29 Palms, Yucca Valley, Calif. Mobile Park, Retail Furniture, Indian Gaming Casinos in San Diego County,Concessionaire/ CO + State Fair. This Editor is.Never "too busy" to confront enemies here at home, , or foreign enemies that hate our 1st Amendment Freedoms. IF YOU WOULD CHANGE THE WORLD... START BY READING THE VIOLENT HISTORY OF ISLAM... Read > Continuum Of WarA < in the Archives, dated March 25, 2010 - Then Print It, and pass along to folks you care about. Read great articles by Marshall Frank & Andrew C. McCarthy. Vigilance Is The PrIce We Must Pay To Save This Republic. Learn more about 'The Enemy Within'; Research 'Stealth Jihad' .~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ *** PEACE THROUGH STRENGTH - YOUR UNWAVERING VIGILANCE WILL PROTECT THIS REPUBLIC ***

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

NYPD POLICE COMMISSIONER
MUST SPEAK OUT


by Marshall Frank

Dear Chief Bratton,

Say something, or quit. If you don’t know you’re being used like a puppet in a national movement by anti-American factions with an anti-American agenda, then you should not hold the office you’re in.

You’re too smart to be fooled. The undercurrent is about much more than a few police brutality cases, valid or invalid. The undercurrent is about anarchy and a turnaround in the democratic process, led by an out-going President, an out-going Attorney General and black radical leaders in the likes of Al Sharpton who not only foments disorder, he has been given a huge platform, aided by a complicit national media base.

This nationwide movement is no accident, it is obviously well-planned and nonspontaneous. You know, and we know, that this is about social change where the law is undermined by the lawless, and the law enforcers are portrayed as the evil doers, while real evil doers are esteemed and martyrized.

Complaints about overuse of force by police will always arise as an issue, because police deal with violent people, hardened criminals, anarchists and crazies…all the time. And sometimes, yes, cops will get carried away and if they are wrong, they should be held to account. One million cops in this country handle over one million violent crimes a year, not to mention many more millions of drug crimes, sex crimes, domestic crimes, thievery, traffic, emergencies of all kinds and life-saving events. Physical confrontations are inevitable, particularly when violators resist arrest. From the many calls for police service, a few complaints will be filed and some of them will be valid. That’s life in the crime world….the world in which police officers are immersed daily.

Police officers must have an above average IQ to pass the entry test. Therefore, they cannot be so stupid as to purposefully target people of color for harassment, false arrests and brutality. Not in today’s world, where cops are under constant scrutiny. Those days are long gone. You know that. Some of these controversial officers may have erred, but if they did, it had nothing – nothing – to do with race. But it’s what your boss, the mayor, wants us to believe, it’s what Sharpton, Holder and Obama want us to believe. It’s what some irresponsible journalists want us to believe.

You’ve been in law enforcement nearly fifty years, which includes leadership of a half dozen large agencies. I know you don’t believe that Eric Garner, Michael Brown, Trayvon, and the others, had anything to do with racism or profiling. You know that, but you remain mute.

The hard reality is that black men commit 73 percent of murders and other violent crime in America while they only comprise 13 percent of the population. Cops don’t ask to be called to robberies, or domestic violence in progress, or murders and burglaries. But they go. And in today’s world, their peril is not only the criminals who would do them harm, but the watchdogs and sofa critics who want to see them vilified, hated and psychologically disarmed.

If they are ever successful, it will ultimately bring the downfall of this great country.

Chief Bratton, I watched you standing behind the new mayor of New York City as he delivered speech after speech, broad brushing police officers as monsters. Why are you lock-step with the race baiters asserting that race discrimination is systemic in police agencies when you KNOW it is not true? How can you stomach that? How can you look yourself in the mirror knowing you are made to appear supportive of this kind of anti-American, anti-police and untrue rhetoric?

You’ve had a great career, Chief. You’ve accomplished a lot. You are worthy of admiration. Don’t spoil it now by being a part of this charade. You’re too good for that.

Other police professionals, chiefs and police unions are speaking out. Your voice would carry more weight than any. Come on, Chief, you don’t really need the job. The people need to know what is really happening from behind the scenes. Do the right thing. Tell the truth.

Signed, Marshall Frank, Captain, retired, Miami-Dade Police Department, 30 years, author.

Monday, December 01, 2014

FERGUSON: BAD GUYS
VERSUS GOOD GUYS

by Marshall Frank

FERGUSON: BAD GUYS VERSUS GOOD GUYS

IT'S TIME TO STOP EXCUSING THUGGERY

It would seem that most parents of the inner cities don’t teach growing kids to respect authority and the rules of law. Both are necessary to an orderly society. If Michael Brown had grown up being praised for good behavior and disciplined for thuggery, he would probably be alive today.

The deaths of Trayvon Martin (2012) and Michael Brown (2014) would never have happened if not for blatant disregard for the law and the people who we entrust to protect. While the media focus is entirely on the allegations that George Zimmerman (2012) and Officer Darren Wilson (2014) committed acts of racist violence toward “children,” we hear little discussion about their actual behavior.

Trayvon Martin was a seventeen year-old Miami resident who was suspended from school for two weeks for having marijuana in his book bag, not to mention unexplained female jewelry and a burglar tool. He’d also been suspended on previous occasions for truancy and graffiti.

During his suspension, Martin was sent to his father’s home in Sanford, Florida, who lived in a modest gated development with a history of break-ins. George Zimmerman was the neighborhood watch coordinator whose job it was to report crimes and any suspicious behavior to the police. That’s what happened on the night of February 26, 2012, when Zimmerman spotted a suspicious male walking in the darkness wearing a hoodie. When Zimmerman called the police, the dispatcher suggested that he back off until the police arrived. Nevertheless, Zimmerman kept the suspicious man in sight, and upon leaving his vehicle was suddenly confronted by an angry Trayvon Martin, who said, “You got a problem with me?”

Now startled, Zimmerman stopped and replied, “No.”

According to Zimmerman, Trayvon said, “Now you do.” Martin delivered a hard fist – a sucker punch – into Zimmerman’s face, knocking him to the ground. That was an act of aggression and violence.

Trayvon Martin then sat atop Zimmerman pummeling him until the watchman was able to retrieve his gun and fire one shot. Trayvon Martin died. George Zimmerman survived, though his head was bleeding front and back from several wounds.

Here’s the wrap:

Trayvon Martin was 6’2” and an athletic football player. Zimmerman was 5’8” and unmatched to Martin’s power.
Trayvon Martin only had to walk two more houses to reach his house and ignore Zimmerman.
Even though Zimmerman continued to follow, he committed no crime. He merely kept Martin in sight.
Trayvon Martin initiated the act of thuggery by beating Zimmerman.
Despite all this, George Zimmerman was vilified in the media and the black community as a racist. The Jacksonville State Attorney filed charges against Zimmerman to appease the black power bloc, knowing it was a losing case and that Zimmerman only acted in self defense.

Along comes 18 year-0ld Michael Brown, on August 9th, 2014. Brown physically bullied a store merchant while stealing (a felony, strong-arm robbery) and was then confronted by a patrolling police officer who only told him and his friend to stop walking in the middle of the street, as a police officer should do. Brown’s response was a surprise physical attack on the cop through the car window, sucker-punching the cop in the face and then going for his firearm.

These are not the actions of a poor, innocent, teenage black child.

Michael Brown had now committed two felonies, including an attack on the officer, to which the officer gave chase (a lawful action) and demanded, at gunpoint, that Brown lay on the ground. Instead, Brown charged the cop, twice. The “boy” was almost 6’5” and weighed 300 pounds. The cop fired his gun in self defense.

All the shoulda coulda scenarios are great for the sofa judges, but when you’re not in that insta-moment, no one can say exactly what they would have done different. The bottom line is that Michael Brown brought about the end result by his own actions. He acted like a thug, committing two violent felonies within minutes of each other, conceivably to impress his little friend. Nevertheless, this had nothing to do with racism.

No one wants to hear about poor kids who are killed. But the cold, hard facts cannot be denied.

Michael Brown and Trayvon Martin broke laws and violently assaulted guardians of the community acting like thugs.
The guardians of the community acted lawfully while executing their responsibilities.
Both decedents brought about their own demise.
Neither were acts of racism. Not even close.
Zimmerman and Wilson are relegated to live in hiding, though innocent of any crime.
Race baiters rule. Just ask the merchants of Ferguson, Missouri.
If people would back away and view the entire fiasco from aside, the shootings, the players, the media, the politicians and the race baiters, one thing comes clear: Bad guys are the good guys; good guys are the bad guys.

There’s something wrong with that.

Sunday, November 09, 2014

ELECTION SENDS CLEAR MESSAGE TO OBAMA

by Marshall Frank

“I am not on the ballot this fall. Michelle’s pretty happy about that. But make no mistake: these policies are on the ballot. Every single one of them.”

– President Barack Obama, October 2, 2014

The next question is: Now that the majority of voters have clearly expressed their disapproval of your policies, Mr. President, what are you going to do about it?

I suspect Mr. Obama is so marinated in power and self-love, he will continue to lead by executive mandate and do what he can to disregard the will of the people. He has a mission, and this election is a stumbling block in that mission. His words:

“The fundamental transformation of America.”

I’ve listened to an array of analyses about the outcome of this election and why the republicans did so well against the once-popular president. Most pundits point to the economy, how the $18 trillion debt continues to pile up untethered, though, in 2008, this president accused George W. Bush of being “unpatriotic” for allowing the debt to increase $5 trillion under his watch. If a $5 trillion increase is unpatriotic, how unpatriotic is a $8 trillion increase which has accrued on Obama’s watch?

By every measure possible, blacks are no better off today than the day he took office. He injects the race card into local happenings which should only be dealt with by the justice system. Immigration is unchecked, with hundreds of thousands of children virtually invited to come to this country as illegals, with guaranteed protections. But these are not the real reason republicans won so many seats this election.

People have been told that this is has been a do-nothing, republican-controlled congress. But those people are unaware that the House of Representatives has passed over 350 bills which were sent to the senate for debate and votes. But that didn’t happen. The overwhelming majority of congressional bills that reached Sen. Harry Reid have gone no further than his desk. No debate. No vote. Reid has been the president’s protective moat. Nothing gets by him. The president hasn’t vetoed bills because hardly any reached his desk. Senator Reid has blocked the votes and then falsely blamed the republican led congress for doing nothing. But that’s not the real reason the republicans did so well.

Neither is it about the IRS or VA scandals, or the Benghazi cover-up fiasco, or the abysmal Obamacare roll-out and the lost jobs that have resulted from businesses being required to insure employees who work over 40 hours a week. So much for full-time jobs. Some people are disillusioned with the community organizer-turned president for those things, and many more. But that’s not the real reason for the major shift in congressional power.

Of course, no one likes the idea that a president can be so glib and unfeeling, that he would make a prepared statement to the press about an American journalist being beheaded on television by radical Islamists, then tee off on the golf course 8 minutes later. Neither do the people appreciate releasing five of the deadliest terrorists on earth from custody – back to the world of killing Americans – all for the political release of an American prisoner who only became a prisoner because he deserted his assignment in a war zone, putting his fellow soldiers at risk.

Well…maybe these last few items are part of the reason. You see, I think Mr. Obama has become so comfortable in his role as president that he feels invulnerable. And the American people are beginning to truly see that. People are beginning to see through, and they don’t like what’s behind that mask.

Much of his downfall stems for the disastrous policies on the foreign stage. People see a man determined – from the very beginning of his presidency—to support a radical Islamic agenda while doing all he can to present an appearance otherwise. The Islamic world today, particularly in the middle-east, is far worse, and far more dangerous for freedom-loving people of the planet, than it was when he took office. Mr. Obama has done everything he could to provide support for the actions and motives of the Muslim Brotherhood, here and abroad, which has led to the crises we are seeing today.

The brash pull-out of any and all American troops from Iraq – which was not only unnecessary, it was dangerous – virtually opened the door for al Qaeda and ISIS to move in to fill the void. It’s hard to conceive that he didn’t know all this, and wasn’t fully apprised of the risks by his upper military command, that Iraq would fall if we didn’t stay. It’s hard to conceive that he didn’t know that al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood would take over Libya, Tunisia and Egypt once the administration supported regime changes in those nations.

People see this. They see the reality of ISIS and what they do to non-Muslims, and decent Muslims who do not conform to their barbaric ideology. People know that the secular Egyptian people are eager to join with the western world in peace, which is why 30 million Egyptians took to the streets to oust Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood which was SUPPORTED BY BARACK OBAMA.

The bottom line: If this president supports the Muslim Brotherhood, then he cannot support the United States. That’s like saying you support Jews and support Hitler at the same time.

People see how inept this president is when dealing with the Russian despot. They see that eastern Europe is now weaker than ever, due to policies enacted by this president. They see that Iran is continuing to march toward a nuclear bomb. They see that Israel is under constant bombardment by Hamas (which was fostered by the Muslim Brotherhood), while this president shows contempt for the leader of Israel. And how many times has the “Christian” president denounced the Christian genocide that is happening in so many Islamic territories.

Where is the American Army in African countries, where hundreds of women have been raped, kidnapped and brought into slavery? Why hasn’t our country joined with France and England in temporarily barring routine commercial flights from countries stricken with Ebola?

This can be a very long article, but I think we see the point. A lot of folks voted against Barack Obama this past Tuesday, not necessarily for the republican party. They voted to strip him of as much power as possible for the next two years, and the only way to do that was to vote for a majority senate and the elimination of the worse senate majority leader in the history of the United States, Harry Reid.

Now it’s time for the republicans to seize this chance for two years to produce positive results and stand up to this president, who is an overt danger to the United States…not yet fully transformed, thank goodness.

Click here: 28 words that Democrats really wish President Obama didn’t say today – The Washington Post

Saturday, November 01, 2014

PROTECT ISRAEL ON ELECTION DAY

by Marshall Frank

Israel is never free from attacks by Hamas, PLO, Hezbollah, … they are surrounded by cultures and countries that- for 66 years — openly vow they will not be satisfied until Israel is utterly destroyed. Nevertheless, Israel is unnecessarily torn in the middle by the Obama administration who pressure and ridicule Netanyahu, as though he’s the bad guy…while Jihadi rockets continue to explode in their towns and streets.

It is a sad time, indeed, for we have never had worse relations with our Israeli allies since it became a country in 1948, than we do now. I’ve always said, and nothing has shown me any different, that Barack Obama plays both sides, but his heart on the side of the Islamists.

This is the reason that I encourage everyone to vote straight down the line Republican this election, no matter the candidate, to pull the rug out from his power base, and prevent him from acting as dictator for his lame duck two years. He relies on support from state governors and senators, and congressmen to carry out his long range mission…in his words…”the fundamental transformation of America.” Let’s not give it to him.

Remember, nothing is better today in the world stage, than when Obama took office, particularly in the Islamist blocs. When we leave Afghanistan, the same thing will happen as has happened in Iraq, which should never have been totally abandoned by American forces. The saving grace is that Egypt rose up when the people saw they were being forced under the yoke of Shariah by Muslim Brotherhood rule – which Obama and Hillary Clinton supported. Let that sink in folks — Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton adamantly supported the Muslim Brotherhood. The people of Egypt rose up in defiance, with banners and signs all over the nation denoting Obama and Hillary as sympathizers with terrorists. That’s the truth.

Click here: Netanyahu responds to U.S.: I am under attack for defending Israel – Diplomacy and Defense Israel News | Haaretz

Notice how we have not heard much from the administration since Morsi was deposed by the people of Egypt? Our attention is being diverted from one of the administration’s most embarrassing (and revealing) mistakes.

Click here: How Obama Sided with the Muslim Brotherhood | National Review Online



Sunday, October 19, 2014

U.S. BLOCKS DEFENSE SHIPMENTS TO ISRAEL

by Marshall Frank

While we are fed constant news about ISIS, Ebola and a questionable police shooting in Ferguson, Missouri, we seem to have lost interest in what is happening on the Israeli front, where rockets continue to pound civilian targets inside their borders and innocent people keep running for their lives. Hamas must love all the outside world’s distractions as they relentlessly fire missile on top of missile into Israeli civilian targets in the hopes of killing anyone for the sake of killing and terrorizing.

Nothing appears in American news feed – not easily found anyway – which tells more of the story, as the Obama administration has blocked all shipments of defensive armament support to Israel, our strongest ally (supposedly) in the middle east. No explanation given. This is reported in the Jewish Press, which is not known for making up false stories.

So this is where we’ve come. Not only is ISIS terrorizing Iraq and Syria into an Islamic State, target bombings be laughable, we are giving a lower (or no) priority to our Israeli partner’s survival. This falls completely into the objectives of the Muslim Brotherhood and radical Islam.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

John L. Esposito:
Apologist for Wahhabi Islam

By Stephen Schwartz

Three things are immediately obvious when one examines the biography of John Louis Esposito, American academic expert on Islam. The first is that -- as noted by his official biographical listing of more than forty-five books and monographs, along with his standing as editor of several reference series -- he seems indefatigably prolific, though the bulk of his writings present interpretations of contemporary phenomena rather than original research. The second is that he luxuriates in honors, including those bestowed by the kingdom of Saudi Arabia and other parties in whose objectivity about Islamic affairs few can believe. Finally, his work has provided an unremitting "explanation" that amounts to a committed defense of radical, rather than traditional, Islam. Esposito aspires to become the chief interlocutor between the U.S., if not the West as a whole, and the Muslim lands -- especially the extremist elements in Islamic societies.
In his career as an academic and public intellectual, Esposito has emphasized his conviction that Islamist ideology is a path to liberation of Muslim societies from oppression, and, like many other Middle East studies experts, he is quick to accuse critics of Muslim radicalism of Islamophobia. He has accumulated a further sheaf of statements that should be embarrassing to him, but apparently is not. Most offensively, he stood up for Sami Al-Arian, who pled guilty in 2006 to a charge of providing services to the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, a Specially Designated Terrorist Organization according to the U.S. government. At an August 18, 2007 fundraising event in Dallas for the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a leading American Islamist group, Esposito declared, "Sami Al-Arian's a very good friend of mine."

On the same occasion, he affirmed his solidarity with "the Holy Land Fund [sic, Holy Land Foundation], but also with CAIR." Five principal leaders of the Holy Land Foundation (HLF) and the organization itself were found guilty in 2008 on 108 charges of support for Hamas. The U.S. authorities had already added HLF to the roster of Specially Designated Terrorist Organizations in 2001, but in the view of Esposito, as recorded on National Public Radio on October 22, 1994, Hamas was "a community-focused group that engages in 'honey, cheese-making, and home-based clothing manufacture.'"
On July 2, 2008, Esposito penned a lachrymose description, addressed to U.S. District Judge Leonie Brinkema, of Al-Arian as a "dedicated family man. ... Sami Al-Arian is a proud, dedicated and committed American as well as a proud and committed Palestinian. He is an extraordinarily bright, articulate scholar and intellectual-activist, a man of conscience with a strong commitment to peace and social justice."

Esposito is University Professor as well as Professor of Religion and International Affairs and of Islamic Studies at Georgetown University. He is also the founding director of the Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding (CMCU) in Georgetown's Walsh School of Foreign Service, renamed the Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding (ACMCU) in 2005, after twelve years in existence, upon the receipt of a $20-million gift from the Saudi prince. Bin Talal became known to Americans in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, when he attempted to hand a $10-million donation to then-mayor of New York Rudy Giuliani. The prince's check was accompanied by a declaration that "the government of the United States of America should re-examine its policies in the Middle East and adopt a more balanced stance towards the Palestinian cause." Giuliani returned the check and rejected Bin Talal's criticism. Four years later, Esposito evinced no such qualms.

Partly educated in and long employed by Catholic institutions, Esposito received his B.A. in philosophy from St. Antony's College, at Oxford in the U.K., in 1963; his M.A. in theology from St. John's University in New York three years later; and his Ph.D. in Islamic Studies, with a minor in comparative religions, at Temple University (Philadelphia) in 1974. From 1975 to 1995 he taught at the College of the Holy Cross in Massachusetts, founded by members of the Society of Jesus (Jesuits), and in 1993, he began his career at Georgetown, another Jesuit institution, with a two-year overlap between the two schools.

Aside from these credentials, Esposito has served as president of the Middle East Studies Association of North America (MESA) and of the American Council for the Study of Islamic Societies, and also as vice chair of the Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy (CSID). In such activities, Esposito's sympathy for radicalism thrives: MESA is rife with anti-American, anti-Israel, and pro-Islamist propaganda camouflaged as scholarship, while CSID is an open advocate for Islamist ideology. Esposito is also vice president (2011) and president-elect (2012) of the American Academy of Religion.

Esposito's wanderings in Islamic affairs have led him along paths that appear distinct to an outsider, but which all end in the same place: advocacy for Islamist governance. His published works include the 2003 volume Turkish Islam and the Secular State: The Gülen Movement (Syracuse University Press), coauthored with M. Hakan Yavuz -- an enthusiastic depiction of the ideological movement directed by the leading Turkish Islamist Fethullah Gülen, presented in the volume as equivalent to "Turkish Islam" in general. This book was followed by a 2010 collection of encomia to Gülen, titled Islam and Peacebuilding: Gülen Movement Initiatives, co-edited with Ihsan Yilmaz and published by Bluedome Press, an apparent Gülenist enterprise. The Gülen movement comprises a major element in the political apparatus created by the Islamist Justice and Development Party, known by its Turkish acronym, the AKP; led by prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan; and holding power in Turkey since 2002.

Esposito has also collaborated with the Turkish academic Ibrahim Kalin, currently a visiting researcher at Georgetown, on a new book, Islamophobia and the Challenge of Pluralism in the 21st Century, published in March 2011 by Oxford University Press. Kalin, a senior adviser to Erdoğan, actively supports the AKP line that "Turkey is certain to increase its multi-leveled engagement policy in the Arab world." This for the Al-Jazeera broadcasting system in June 2011, following the third national electoral triumph for the AKP, which Kalin hailed as "a victory not only for Prime Minister Erdoğan but also for Turkish democracy."

Esposito has also toiled in the ideological fields of the Islamic Republic of Iran, which awarded him its 1996 World Book Prize, although his C.V., which differs from his Georgetown biography, doesn't name the book. But his most notable service -- by far -- is to Saudi Arabia and its official Wahhabi interpretation of Islam. In his endeavors, Esposito has availed himself of three females he has mentored through careers in academia and public policy: Natana DeLong-Bas, Hadia Mubarak, and Dalia Mogahed. The activities of these scholars, whom Esposito has nurtured, offer further evidence of Esposito's radicalizing influence within Middle East studies.

Georgetown graduate DeLong-Bas, who also taught at Brandeis, is now a part-time faculty member in the theology department at Boston College. In 2004 she wrote Wahhabi Islam: from Revival to Global Jihad, also published by Oxford, and produced, as she noted, with the encouragement of Esposito, with whom she had coauthored an edition of one his earlier tomes, Women in Muslim Family Law (Syracuse, 2002). Further, DeLong-Bas acknowledged the assistance of three prominent Saudis in writing her Wahhabi apologia: Prince Faisal Bin Salman, whose title she left unmentioned; Abdallah S. al-Uthaymin, son of a Wahhabi cleric; and Fahd as-Semmari, director of the King Abd Al-Aziz Foundation for Research and Archives, in Riyadh, for which she expressed thanks for financial support.

Here the Esposito method was laid bare: thanks to his sponsorship, Saudi money subsidized a U.S. academic product intended to ameliorate the image of Wahhabism, the most extreme fundamentalist interpretation of Islam in modern times, and the inspirer of so-called "Salafi" radicals, from the Muslim Brotherhood through the South Asian jihadist movement founded by Abul Ala Mawdudi to al-Qaeda. In the mind of DeLong-Bas, Wahhabism could be considered, as noted in a review of the book, "peaceful, traditional, spiritual, and even feminist."

DeLong-Bas outdid herself, however, in an interview with the Saudi-owned pan-Arab newspaper al-Sharq al-Awsat on December 21, 2006. Therein she denied that Wahhabism was extreme; that Muslim Brotherhood founder Hassan al-Banna and the movement's foremost ideologue, Sayyid Qutb, were jihadists; and, most incredibly, that there was evidence for the involvement of the then-living Osama bin Laden in the 9/11 attacks.

Next among Esposito's prominent female disciples came Hadia Mubarak, a researcher at CMCU, who arrived there via a post as national president of the Muslim Students Association (MSA) of the U.S. and Canada and as a board member of CAIR, two leading components of the "Wahhabi lobby" in the U.S. She had received her B.A. from Florida State University and was accepted at Georgetown for graduate work. There she became inveigled in an unsuccessful but nonetheless disreputable effort to transfer $325,000 to ACMCU from the Organization for the Islamic Conference (OIC), a fifty-seven-member international body created in 1969 to "protect" the Muslim holy sites in Jerusalem from Israel. Mubarak then went to work for the Gallup Poll's Muslim World Project.

At Gallup, Mubarak joined another Esposito protégée, Dalia Mogahed. Born in Egypt and possessor of an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh, Mogahed was Esposito's coauthor in what may have been his most successful -- and certainly his most widely-cited -- book, Who Speaks For Islam?: What a Billion Muslims Really Think, published in 2008 by Gallup Press. As Robert Satloff, executive director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP), described the volume, Esposito and Mogahed claimed that "'everyday Muslims' are so similar to ordinary Americans that 'conflict between the Muslim and Western communities is far from inevitable.'" Satloff continued:

Similar arguments have been made before; some of this is true, some is rubbish, much is irrelevant[.] ... The question often revolves around a disputed data point: Of the world's 1.3 billion Muslims, how many are radicals? ... The book draws on a mammoth, six-year effort to poll and interview tens of thousands of Muslims in more than 35 countries with Muslim majorities or substantial minorities[.] ... The answer to that all-important question, the authors say, is 7 percent[.] ... The not-so-hidden purpose of this book is to blur any difference between average Muslims around the world and average Americans, and the authors rise to the occasion at every turn.

Satloff noted that at a WINEP event hosted for Mogahed, she admitted that "[t]he book is a book about the modern Muslim world that used its polling to inform its analysis. So that's important: It's meant for a general audience, and it's not meant to be a polling report." Mogahed is also known for her lighthearted treatment of Islamic law as protective of women, among other adventures in the company of extremists.

These slippery methods, inculcated by Esposito in his three female acolytes, exemplify, as much as his own signed work, the outlook Esposito has adopted and pursued throughout his career. In a remarkably candid 2005 interview with him in a periodical, The Muslim Weekly, the paper's writer, Scott Jaschik, noted Esposito's repellent cynicism:

Esposito's career took off after the Shah of Iran fell in 1979, and everyone could see the power of political Islam. "I owe my Lexus and my career to the Ayatollah Khomeini," he tells his students at Georgetown.

Jaschik further wrote:

It is an article of faith to many policy makers...that Hamas, Hezbollah, and the Muslim Brotherhood are terrorist groups who should be denied any role in political discussions or civil society. Esposito -- while condemning suicide bombings and attacks on civilians as 'immoral' -- says these groups cannot be written off.

During the recent upheavals in the Middle East, when one would expect Esposito, as an expert on Islam and revolution, to be at the forefront of advocacy for change in countries where dictatorships had used Islam as a cover for political oppression, the Georgetown professor was and has been uncharacteristically quiet, limiting his comments to vague, perfunctory blog articles loaded with stereotypes. In one, co-authored with yet another CMCU researcher, Sheila Lalwani, we read:

Policymakers must move beyond policies that equated protection of national interests with the stability and security of regimes and were driven more by fear of the unknown than support for Western principles of self-determination, democracy and human rights.

In another, signed with Dalia Mogahed, we find:

Old habits die hard[.] ... Clinging to a failed narrative and the threat of a hostile Islamist takeover, risks succumbing to the temptation to 'encourage' or influence a specific outcome in Arab elections which will validate the concerns of Egyptians and others in the Arab world.

That's the real Esposito, even if somewhat watered down: discounting the threat of radical Islam even as it makes a flamboyant entry, particularly in the Egyptian Revolution. Yes, indeed, old habits do die hard. On that point, there can be no disagreement with John Louis Esposito.

Stephen Schwartz is executive director of the Center for Islamic Pluralism. He wrote this article for Campus Watch, a project of the Middle East Forum.

Three things are immediately obvious when one examines the biography of John Louis Esposito, American academic expert on Islam. The first is that -- as noted by his official biographical listing of more than forty-five books and monographs, along with his standing as editor of several reference series -- he seems indefatigably prolific, though the bulk of his writings present interpretations of contemporary phenomena rather than original research. The second is that he luxuriates in honors, including those bestowed by the kingdom of Saudi Arabia and other parties in whose objectivity about Islamic affairs few can believe. Finally, his work has provided an unremitting "explanation" that amounts to a committed defense of radical, rather than traditional, Islam. Esposito aspires to become the chief interlocutor between the U.S., if not the West as a whole, and the Muslim lands -- especially the extremist elements in Islamic societies.

In his career as an academic and public intellectual, Esposito has emphasized his conviction that Islamist ideology is a path to liberation of Muslim societies from oppression, and, like many other Middle East studies experts, he is quick to accuse critics of Muslim radicalism of Islamophobia. He has accumulated a further sheaf of statements that should be embarrassing to him, but apparently is not. Most offensively, he stood up for Sami Al-Arian, who pled guilty in 2006 to a charge of providing services to the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, a Specially Designated Terrorist Organization according to the U.S. government. At an August 18, 2007 fundraising event in Dallas for the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a leading American Islamist group, Esposito declared, "Sami Al-Arian's a very good friend of mine."

On the same occasion, he affirmed his solidarity with "the Holy Land Fund [sic, Holy Land Foundation], but also with CAIR." Five principal leaders of the Holy Land Foundation (HLF) and the organization itself were found guilty in 2008 on 108 charges of support for Hamas. The U.S. authorities had already added HLF to the roster of Specially Designated Terrorist Organizations in 2001, but in the view of Esposito, as recorded on National Public Radio on October 22, 1994, Hamas was "a community-focused group that engages in 'honey, cheese-making, and home-based clothing manufacture.'"

On July 2, 2008, Esposito penned a lachrymose description, addressed to U.S. District Judge Leonie Brinkema, of Al-Arian as a "dedicated family man. ... Sami Al-Arian is a proud, dedicated and committed American as well as a proud and committed Palestinian. He is an extraordinarily bright, articulate scholar and intellectual-activist, a man of conscience with a strong commitment to peace and social justice."

Esposito is University Professor as well as Professor of Religion and International Affairs and of Islamic Studies at Georgetown University. He is also the founding director of the Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding (CMCU) in Georgetown's Walsh School of Foreign Service, renamed the Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding (ACMCU) in 2005, after twelve years in existence, upon the receipt of a $20-million gift from the Saudi prince. Bin Talal became known to Americans in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, when he attempted to hand a $10-million donation to then-mayor of New York Rudy Giuliani. The prince's check was accompanied by a declaration that "the government of the United States of America should re-examine its policies in the Middle East and adopt a more balanced stance towards the Palestinian cause." Giuliani returned the check and rejected Bin Talal's criticism. Four years later, Esposito evinced no such qualms.

Partly educated in and long employed by Catholic institutions, Esposito received his B.A. in philosophy from St. Antony's College, at Oxford in the U.K., in 1963; his M.A. in theology from St. John's University in New York three years later; and his Ph.D. in Islamic Studies, with a minor in comparative religions, at Temple University (Philadelphia) in 1974. From 1975 to 1995 he taught at the College of the Holy Cross in Massachusetts, founded by members of the Society of Jesus (Jesuits), and in 1993, he began his career at Georgetown, another Jesuit institution, with a two-year overlap between the two schools.

Aside from these credentials, Esposito has served as president of the Middle East Studies Association of North America (MESA) and of the American Council for the Study of Islamic Societies, and also as vice chair of the Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy (CSID). In such activities, Esposito's sympathy for radicalism thrives: MESA is rife with anti-American, anti-Israel, and pro-Islamist propaganda camouflaged as scholarship, while CSID is an open advocate for Islamist ideology. Esposito is also vice president (2011) and president-elect (2012) of the American Academy of Religion.

Esposito's wanderings in Islamic affairs have led him along paths that appear distinct to an outsider, but which all end in the same place: advocacy for Islamist governance. His published works include the 2003 volume Turkish Islam and the Secular State: The Gülen Movement (Syracuse University Press), coauthored with M. Hakan Yavuz -- an enthusiastic depiction of the ideological movement directed by the leading Turkish Islamist Fethullah Gülen, presented in the volume as equivalent to "Turkish Islam" in general. This book was followed by a 2010 collection of encomia to Gülen, titled Islam and Peacebuilding: Gülen Movement Initiatives, co-edited with Ihsan Yilmaz and published by Bluedome Press, an apparent Gülenist enterprise. The Gülen movement comprises a major element in the political apparatus created by the Islamist Justice and Development Party, known by its Turkish acronym, the AKP; led by prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan; and holding power in Turkey since 2002.

Esposito has also collaborated with the Turkish academic Ibrahim Kalin, currently a visiting researcher at Georgetown, on a new book, Islamophobia and the Challenge of Pluralism in the 21st Century, published in March 2011 by Oxford University Press. Kalin, a senior adviser to Erdoğan, actively supports the AKP line that "Turkey is certain to increase its multi-leveled engagement policy in the Arab world." This for the Al-Jazeera broadcasting system in June 2011, following the third national electoral triumph for the AKP, which Kalin hailed as "a victory not only for Prime Minister Erdoğan but also for Turkish democracy."

Esposito has also toiled in the ideological fields of the Islamic Republic of Iran, which awarded him its 1996 World Book Prize, although his C.V., which differs from his Georgetown biography, doesn't name the book. But his most notable service -- by far -- is to Saudi Arabia and its official Wahhabi interpretation of Islam. In his endeavors, Esposito has availed himself of three females he has mentored through careers in academia and public policy: Natana DeLong-Bas, Hadia Mubarak, and Dalia Mogahed. The activities of these scholars, whom Esposito has nurtured, offer further evidence of Esposito's radicalizing influence within Middle East studies.

Georgetown graduate DeLong-Bas, who also taught at Brandeis, is now a part-time faculty member in the theology department at Boston College. In 2004 she wrote Wahhabi Islam: from Revival to Global Jihad, also published by Oxford, and produced, as she noted, with the encouragement of Esposito, with whom she had coauthored an edition of one his earlier tomes, Women in Muslim Family Law (Syracuse, 2002). Further, DeLong-Bas acknowledged the assistance of three prominent Saudis in writing her Wahhabi apologia: Prince Faisal Bin Salman, whose title she left unmentioned; Abdallah S. al-Uthaymin, son of a Wahhabi cleric; and Fahd as-Semmari, director of the King Abd Al-Aziz Foundation for Research and Archives, in Riyadh, for which she expressed thanks for financial support.

Here the Esposito method was laid bare: thanks to his sponsorship, Saudi money subsidized a U.S. academic product intended to ameliorate the image of Wahhabism, the most extreme fundamentalist interpretation of Islam in modern times, and the inspirer of so-called "Salafi" radicals, from the Muslim Brotherhood through the South Asian jihadist movement founded by Abul Ala Mawdudi to al-Qaeda. In the mind of DeLong-Bas, Wahhabism could be considered, as noted in a review of the book, "peaceful, traditional, spiritual, and even feminist."

DeLong-Bas outdid herself, however, in an interview with the Saudi-owned pan-Arab newspaper al-Sharq al-Awsat on December 21, 2006. Therein she denied that Wahhabism was extreme; that Muslim Brotherhood founder Hassan al-Banna and the movement's foremost ideologue, Sayyid Qutb, were jihadists; and, most incredibly, that there was evidence for the involvement of the then-living Osama bin Laden in the 9/11 attacks.

Next among Esposito's prominent female disciples came Hadia Mubarak, a researcher at CMCU, who arrived there via a post as national president of the Muslim Students Association (MSA) of the U.S. and Canada and as a board member of CAIR, two leading components of the "Wahhabi lobby" in the U.S. She had received her B.A. from Florida State University and was accepted at Georgetown for graduate work. There she became inveigled in an unsuccessful but nonetheless disreputable effort to transfer $325,000 to ACMCU from the Organization for the Islamic Conference (OIC), a fifty-seven-member international body created in 1969 to "protect" the Muslim holy sites in Jerusalem from Israel. Mubarak then went to work for the Gallup Poll's Muslim World Project.

At Gallup, Mubarak joined another Esposito protégée, Dalia Mogahed. Born in Egypt and possessor of an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh, Mogahed was Esposito's coauthor in what may have been his most successful -- and certainly his most widely-cited -- book, Who Speaks For Islam?: What a Billion Muslims Really Think, published in 2008 by Gallup Press. As Robert Satloff, executive director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP), described the volume, Esposito and Mogahed claimed that "'everyday Muslims' are so similar to ordinary Americans that 'conflict between the Muslim and Western communities is far from inevitable.'" Satloff continued:

Similar arguments have been made before; some of this is true, some is rubbish, much is irrelevant[.] ... The question often revolves around a disputed data point: Of the world's 1.3 billion Muslims, how many are radicals? ... The book draws on a mammoth, six-year effort to poll and interview tens of thousands of Muslims in more than 35 countries with Muslim majorities or substantial minorities[.] ... The answer to that all-important question, the authors say, is 7 percent[.] ... The not-so-hidden purpose of this book is to blur any difference between average Muslims around the world and average Americans, and the authors rise to the occasion at every turn.

Satloff noted that at a WINEP event hosted for Mogahed, she admitted that "[t]he book is a book about the modern Muslim world that used its polling to inform its analysis. So that's important: It's meant for a general audience, and it's not meant to be a polling report." Mogahed is also known for her lighthearted treatment of Islamic law as protective of women, among other adventures in the company of extremists.

These slippery methods, inculcated by Esposito in his three female acolytes, exemplify, as much as his own signed work, the outlook Esposito has adopted and pursued throughout his career. In a remarkably candid 2005 interview with him in a periodical, The Muslim Weekly, the paper's writer, Scott Jaschik, noted Esposito's repellent cynicism:

Esposito's career took off after the Shah of Iran fell in 1979, and everyone could see the power of political Islam. "I owe my Lexus and my career to the Ayatollah Khomeini," he tells his students at Georgetown.

Jaschik further wrote:

It is an article of faith to many policy makers...that Hamas, Hezbollah, and the Muslim Brotherhood are terrorist groups who should be denied any role in political discussions or civil society. Esposito -- while condemning suicide bombings and attacks on civilians as 'immoral' -- says these groups cannot be written off.

During the recent upheavals in the Middle East, when one would expect Esposito, as an expert on Islam and revolution, to be at the forefront of advocacy for change in countries where dictatorships had used Islam as a cover for political oppression, the Georgetown professor was and has been uncharacteristically quiet, limiting his comments to vague, perfunctory blog articles loaded with stereotypes. In one, co-authored with yet another CMCU researcher, Sheila Lalwani, we read:

Policymakers must move beyond policies that equated protection of national interests with the stability and security of regimes and were driven more by fear of the unknown than support for Western principles of self-determination, democracy and human rights.

In another, signed with Dalia Mogahed, we find:

Old habits die hard[.] ... Clinging to a failed narrative and the threat of a hostile Islamist takeover, risks succumbing to the temptation to 'encourage' or influence a specific outcome in Arab elections which will validate the concerns of Egyptians and others in the Arab world.

That's the real Esposito, even if somewhat watered down: discounting the threat of radical Islam even as it makes a flamboyant entry, particularly in the Egyptian Revolution. Yes, indeed, old habits do die hard. On that point, there can be no disagreement with John Louis Esposito.

Stephen Schwartz is executive director of the Center for Islamic Pluralism. He wrote this article for Campus Watch, a project of the Middle East Forum.

Thursday, October 09, 2014

Negating the Propagandist Ruse of NPR

by Tabitha Korol

NPR’s political position is heard by many, and its audience is led to sympathize with the Islamic enemies of civilization. Our very future is in upheaval and I challenge NPR’s motives, ethics, and sense of responsibility.

I have written NPR (Notorious for Palestinian Revisionism) in the past, regarding its position on the war of Islam against Israel, the Jews and Christians worldwide. Whether it is Hamas, ISIS, Muslim Brotherhood, Hezbollah, Boko Haram, and even the most ludicrous appellation – “religion of peace,” their goal is the same: global conquest and the spread of Islam and Sharia law. The Hamas charter applies to all Muslims, including Palestinians, and how it obligates them to continue their 1400 years of bloodshed until the world is entirely Islamic, under Allah. Their history and plans are clearly delineated in the first paragraph of their Covenant – they obliterated cultures before and will continue doing so in the future. What is it about “obliterate” that NPR doesn’t understand?

Hamas Covenant

In the name of the Most Merciful Allah

“Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it just as it obliterated others before it. Our struggle against the Jews is very great and very serious. It needs all sincere efforts.”

Hamas’s name means Islamic Resistance Movement in Arabic -- violence. They will never recognize the State of Israel’s right to exist as an independent sovereign nation, and Islam intends to “wipe it out as it wiped out what went before.” Moslems follow Mohammad’s behavior and decrees for jihad against all who reject Allah as their god and Mohammad as their prophet. They wiped out civilizations before in the Middle East, destroyed artifacts to erase all remnants of their existence, and they continue their malevolence, death, destruction, enslavement and looting. Their methods are numerous and adaptable, using violence as needed, and stealth jihad where it is more prudent. They will decapitate for expediency, but infiltrate into government and schools, using propaganda and deceit. They are inventive and methodical, and above all, dedicated.

Followed by every lame apology is another NPR report to the ill-informed, vulnerable public, using every myth and canard to claim Palestinian victimization by Israel. If there were a modicum of sincerity and honest journalism, the reporters would properly investigate incidents and compare their findings with those of the Jerusalem Post or Arutz Sheva before going to print.

Hamas, a Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, is designated a terrorist organization by Israel, the United States, Canada, the European Union and Japan, yet NPR continues to transmit its dishonesty to the masses. Hamas is responsible for suicide bombings, murder tunnels, unspeakable slaughter and mayhem, and the launching of tens of thousands of rockets and missiles to harm innocent civilians and children in Israel (not to mention the chaos, kidnapping and enslaving of students in Africa) and is now restoring to daily routine their 7th century barbarian practice of chopping heads of innocent civilians to Europe and America.

Be reminded that this death cult has no qualms about victimizing their own women and children, using them as human bombs and human shields to gain public sympathy. By contrast, it has been proven that the IDF does its utmost to avoid civilian casualties when retaliating against Hamas forces. Israel is a small home to many religions and nationalities, fighting for its survival amid a sea of 1.3 billion trained, obedient, riot-ready Muslims on a land mass a thousand times the size of Israel. Americans benefit from Israel’s industry, creativity, accomplishments in science and medicine. NPR’s staff would live freely in Israel, but eventually face a subservient life and horrific death in an Islamic country, yet they support the global Islamic cause as though they were mad or suicidal. Even NPR is being hoodwinked by its deceptive reporters.

Therefore I need to convey that Israel was vindicated by the United Nations’ damage assessment of Gaza. They confirm that Israel attacked Hamas targets with restraint.

· Israel did not retaliate by rote against Hamas’s systematic attacks on civilian targets, but bombed specific facilities, bases, weapons and tunnels.

· Most of the damage was limited to areas of 25 meters or less, and most of Gaza was not damaged – less than 5 percent of Gaza was hit by the IDF.

· The most populated areas were disproportionally UNdamaged, or had limited damage.

· The areas reported in the UN damage assessment report are compatible with the IDF briefings on Hamas’s battle areas.

· When Hamas deliberately concentrated its terror against Israeli civilians from densely populated urban areas in Gaza, the areas were undamaged.

· Israel demonstrated exceptional efforts to minimize collateral damage by warning civilians, thereby forfeiting the surprise effect; they were guided by security rather than retaliatory or political expediency.

· Israel followed surgical bombing tactics, not carpet bombing, not random or indiscriminate.

· Most Israeli bombing hit terror-related sites, such as multiple tunnel entrances and shafts, and mortar and missile launching sites.

· Fifteen percent of Hamas rockets and mortars were short, hitting civilian targets inside Gaza.

Does NPR grasp that their protection emboldens Muslims to increase their evil against the world, and that what Islam does in Israel, England and Sweden will soon become conventional in America? Perhaps NPR can explain how its staff is preparing to survive our destruction. Any stealth funds they receive will only guarantee that they will not be eaten by the Islamic crocodile first; but they will be eaten.

NPR’s Lourdes Garcia-Navarro has reported that Israeli settlements in the West Bank are “seen” as illegal, rather than asserting that they are legal under the Balfour Declaration, San Remo Treaty, League of Nations’ Palestine Mandate (article 6), and UN Security Council Resolution 242. She has reported that Israeli residents are violent toward Palestinian residents, but statistics prove otherwise.

NPR reported that Mayor Goldsmith “said” there was a massacre of the Fogel family, but not that the massacre occurred, thereby questioning the occurrence and diminishing its importance and impact. Ignoring Palestinian violence, arson and stone throwing, Garcia-Navarro added there was “no justice for Palestinians.” Mike Shuster’s report on the Second Intifada, and Daniel Schorr’s report on the Gaza Flotilla, among others, were severely skewed.

Most recently, NPR reported the number killed in Gaza, without explaining the civilian count -- those women and children intentionally centered in the war zone to increase the horror, as Westerners express their shock at why Israelis kill so many “innocents.” NPR fails to inform the public that the IDF does and did warn citizens to flee an area that will be counterattacked, and that these dead are victims of their own people.

Will NPR ever realize that honorable journalism might be used to motivate and unite citizens to save our world before we run out of time?

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

The Persistence of Islamic Slavery

By: Robert Spencer

The International Criminal Court recently issued warrants for the arrest of Ahmed Haroun, the minister for humanitarian affairs of Sudan, and Ali Kosheib, a leader of that country’s notorious janjaweed militia. The Sudanese government has refused to hand over the two for prosecution. Charges include murder, rape, torture and “imprisonment or severe deprivation of liberty.” Severe deprivation of liberty is a euphemism for slavery. Egypt’s Al-Ahram Weekly observed not long ago that in Sudan, “slavery, sanctioned by religious zealots, ravaged the southern parts of the country and much of the west as well.”

Muslim slavers in the Sudan primarily enslave non-Muslims, and chiefly Christians. According to the Coalition Against Slavery in Mauritania and Sudan (CASMAS), a human rights and abolitionist movement, “The current Khartoum government wants to bring the non-Muslim black South in line with Sharia law, laid down and interpreted by conservative Muslim clergy. The black animist and Christian South has been ravaged for many years of slave raids by Arabs from the north and east and resists Muslim religious rule and the perceived economic, cultural, and religious expansion behind it.”

The BBC reported in March 2007 that slave raids “were a common feature of Sudan’s 21-year north-south war, which ended in 2005….According to a study by the Kenya-based Rift Valley Institute, some 11,000 young boys and girls were seized and taken across the internal border -- many to the states of South Darfur and West Kordofan….Most were forcibly converted to Islam, given Muslim names and told not to speak their mother tongue.” One modern-day Sudanese Christian slave, James Pareng Alier, was kidnapped and enslaved when he was twelve years old. Religion was a major element of his ordeal: “I was forced to learn the Koran and re-baptised “Ahmed.” They told me that Christianity was a bad religion. After a time we were given military training and they told us we would be sent to fight.” Alier has no idea of his family’s whereabouts. But while non-Muslims slaves are often forcibly converted to Islam, their conversion does not lead to their freedom. Mauritanian anti-slavery campaigner Boubacar Messaoud explains: “It’s like having sheep or goats. If a woman is a slave, her descendants are slaves.”

Anti-slavery crusaders like Messaoud have great difficulty working against this attitude because it is rooted in the Qur’an and Muhammad’s example. The Muslim prophet Muhammad owned slaves, and like the Bible, the Qur’an takes the existence of slavery for granted, even as it enjoins the freeing of slaves under certain circumstances, such as the breaking of an oath: “Allah will not call you to account for what is futile in your oaths, but He will call you to account for your deliberate oaths: for expiation, feed ten indigent persons, on a scale of the average for the food of your families; or clothe them; or give a slave his freedom” (5:89). But while the freeing of a slave or two here and there is encouraged, the institution itself is never questioned. The Qur’an even gives a man permission to have sexual relations with his slave girls as well as with his wives: “The believers must (eventually) win through, those who humble themselves in their prayers; who avoid vain talk; who are active in deeds of charity; who abstain from sex, except with those joined to them in the marriage bond, or (the captives) whom their right hands possess, for (in their case) they are free from blame…” (23:1-6). A Muslim is not to have sexual relations with a woman who is married to someone else – except a slave girl: “And all married women (are forbidden unto you) save those (captives) whom your right hands possess. It is a decree of Allah for you” (4:24).

In the past, as today, most slaves in Islam were non-Muslims who had been captured during jihad warfare. The pioneering scholar of the treatment of non-Muslims in Islamic societies, Bat Ye’or, explains the system that developed out of jihad conquest:

The jihad slave system included contingents of both sexes delivered annually in conformity with the treaties of submission by sovereigns who were tributaries of the caliph. When Amr conquered Tripoli (Libya) in 643, he forced the Jewish and Christian Berbers to give their wives and children as slaves to the Arab army as part of their jizya [tax on non-Muslims]. From 652 until its conquest in 1276,
Nubia was forced to send an annual contingent of slaves to Cairo. Treaties concluded with the towns of Transoxiana, Sijistan, Armenia, and Fezzan (Maghreb) under the Umayyads and Abbasids stipulated an annual dispatch of slaves from both sexes. However, the main sources for the supply of slaves remained the regular raids on villages within the dar-al-harb [House of War, i.e., non-Islamic regions] and the military expeditions which swept more deeply into the infidel lands, emptying towns and provinces of their inhabitants.[1]

Historian Speros Vryonis observes that “since the beginning of the Arab razzias [raids] into the land of Rum [the Byzantine Empire], human booty had come to constitute a very important portion of the spoils.” As they steadily conquered more and more of Anatolia, the Turks reduced many of the Greeks and other non-Muslims there to slave status: “They enslaved men, women, and children from all major urban centers and from the countryside where the populations were defenseless.”[2] The Indian historian K. S. Lal states that wherever jihadists conquered a territory, “there developed a system of slavery peculiar to the clime, terrain and populace of the place.” When Muslim armies invaded India, “its people began to be enslaved in droves to be sold in foreign lands or employed in various capacities on menial and not-so-menial jobs within the country.”[3]

Slaves faced pressure to convert to Islam. In an analysis of Islamic political theories, Patricia Crone notes that after a jihad battle was concluded, “male captives might be killed or enslaved…Dispersed in Muslim households, slaves almost always converted, encouraged or pressurized [sic] by their masters, driven by a need to bond with others, or slowly, becoming accustomed to seeing things through Muslim eyes even if they tried to resist.”[4] Thomas Pellow, an Englishman who was enslaved in Morocco for twenty-three years after being captured as a cabin boy on a small English vessel in 1716, was tortured until he accepted Islam. For weeks he was beaten and starved, and finally gave in after his torturer resorted to “burning my flesh off my bones by fire, which the tyrant did, by frequent repetitions, after a most cruel manner.”[5]

Slavery was taken for granted throughout Islamic history, as it was, of course, in the West as well up until relatively recent times. Yet while the European and American slave trade get stern treatment attention from historians (as well as from reparations advocates and guilt-ridden politicians), the Islamic slave trade, which actually lasted longer and brought suffering to a larger number of people, is virtually ignored. (This fact magnifies the irony of Islam being presented to American blacks as the egalitarian alternative to the “white man’s slave religion” of Christianity.) While historians estimate that the transatlantic slave trade, which operated between the sixteenth and nineteenth centuries, involved around 10.5 million people, the Islamic slave trade in the Sahara, the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean areas began in the seventh century and lasted into the nineteenth, and involved 17 million people.[6]

And when pressure came to end slavery, it moved from Christendom into Islam, not the other way around. There was no Muslim William Wilberforce or William Lloyd Garrison. In fact, when the British government in the nineteenth century adopted the view of Wilberforce and the other abolitionists and began to put pressure on pro-slavery regimes, the Sultan of Morocco was incredulous. “The traffic in slaves,” he noted, “is a matter on which all sects and nations have agreed from the time of the sons of Adam...up to this day.” He said that he was “not aware of its being prohibited by the laws of any sect” and that the very idea that anyone would question its morality was absurd: “No one need ask this question, the same being manifest to both high and low and requires no more demonstration than the light of day.”[7]

However, it was not the unanimity of human practice, but the words of the Qur’an and Muhammad that were decisive in stifling abolitionist movements within the Islamic world. Slavery was abolished only as a result of Western pressure; the Arab Muslim slave trade in Africa was ended by the force of British arms in the nineteenth century.

Besides being practiced more or less openly today in Sudan and Mauritania, there is evidence that slavery still continues beneath the surface in some majority-Muslim countries as well -- notably Saudi Arabia, which only abolished slavery in 1962, Yemen and Oman, both of which ended legal slavery in 1970, and Niger, which didn’t abolish slavery until 2004. In Niger, the ban is widely ignored, and as many as one million people remain in bondage. Slaves are bred, often raped, and generally treated like animals.

A shadow cast by the strength and perdurability of Islamic slavery can be seen in instances where Muslims have managed to import this institution to the United States. A Saudi named Homaidan Al-Turki, for instance, was sentenced in September 2006 to 27 years to life in prison, for keeping a woman as a slave in his home in Colorado. For his part, Al-Turki claimed that he was a victim of anti-Muslim bias. He told the judge: “Your honor, I am not here to apologize, for I cannot apologize for things I did not do and for crimes I did not commit. The state has criminalized these basic Muslim behaviors. Attacking traditional Muslim behaviors was the focal point of the prosecution.” The following month, an Egyptian couple living in Southern California received a fine and prison terms, to be followed by deportation, after pleading guilty to holding a ten-year-old girl as a slave. And in January 2007, an attaché of the Kuwaiti embassy in Washington, Waleed Al Saleh, and his wife were charged with keeping three Christian domestic workers from India in slave-like conditions in al-Saleh’s Virginia home. One of the women remarked: “I believed that I had no choice but to continue working for them even though they beat me and treated me worse than a slave.”

All this indicates that the problem of Islamic slavery is not restricted to recent events in the Sudan; it is much larger and more deeply rooted. The United Nations and human rights organizations have noted the phenomenon, but nevertheless little has been done to move decisively against those who still hold human beings in bondage, or aid or tolerate others doing so. The UN has tried to place peacekeeping forces in Darfur, over the objections of the Sudanese government, but its remonstrations against slavery in Sudan and elsewhere have likewise not resulted in significant government action against the practice. Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have also noted the problem, but as HRW observes, “the government of Sudan has stonewalled on the issue of slavery, claiming it was a matter of rival tribes engaging in hostage taking, over which it had little control. That is simply untrue, as myriad reports coming out of southern Sudan have made abundantly clear.” For Islamic slavery to disappear, a powerful state would have to move against it decisively, not with mere words, and accept no equivocation of half-measures. In today’s international geopolitical climate, nothing could be less likely.

Notes:

[1] Bat Ye’or, The Decline of Eastern Christianity Under Islam: From Jihad to Dhimmitude, Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 1996, p. 108.
[2] Speros Vryonis, The Decline of Medieval Hellenism in Asia Minor and the Process of Islamization from the Eleventh through the Fifteenth Century, Berkeley, 1971. P. 174-5. Quoted in Bostom, Legacy of Jihad, p. 87.
[3] K. S. Lal, Muslim Slave System in Medieval India, Aditya Prakashan, 1994. P. 9.
[4] Patricia Crone, God’s Rule: Government and Islam, Columbia University Press, 2004. Pp. 371-372. Quoted in Bostom, Legacy of Jihad, p. 86.
[5] Giles Milton, White Gold: The Extraordinary Story of Thomas Pellow and Islam’s One Million White Slaves, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2004. P. 84.
[6] Andrew Bostom, The Legacy of Jihad, Prometheus, 2005, pp. 89-90.
[7] Quoted in Bernard Lewis, Race and Slavery in the Middle East, Oxford University Press, 1994. Reprinted at http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/med/lewis1.html.
Robert Spencer is a scholar of Islamic history, theology, and law and the director of Jihad Watch. He is the author of eight books, eleven monographs, and hundreds of articles about jihad and Islamic terrorism, including the New York Times Bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His latest book, Stealth Jihad: How Radical Islam is Subverting America without Guns or Bombs, is available now from Regnery Publishing.

Monday, September 29, 2014

The Khorosan Group
Does Not Exist

By Andrew C. McCarthy

It’s a fictitious name the Obama administration invented to deceive us.

We’re being had. Again.

For six years, President Obama has endeavored to will the country into accepting two pillars of his alternative national-security reality. First, he claims to have dealt decisively with the terrorist threat, rendering it a disparate series of ragtag jayvees. Second, he asserts that the threat is unrelated to Islam, which is innately peaceful, moderate, and opposed to the wanton “violent extremists” who purport to act in its name.

Now, the president has been compelled to act against a jihad that has neither ended nor been “decimated.” The jihad, in fact, has inevitably intensified under his counterfactual worldview, which holds that empowering Islamic supremacists is the path to security and stability. Yet even as war intensifies in Iraq and Syria — even as jihadists continue advancing, continue killing and capturing hapless opposition forces on the ground despite Obama’s futile air raids — the president won’t let go of the charade.

Hence, Obama gives us the Khorosan Group.

The who?

There is a reason that no one had heard of such a group until a nanosecond ago, when the “Khorosan Group” suddenly went from anonymity to the “imminent threat” that became the rationale for an emergency air war there was supposedly no time to ask Congress to authorize.

You haven’t heard of the Khorosan Group because there isn’t one. It is a name the administration came up with, calculating that Khorosan — the –Iranian–​Afghan border region — had sufficient connection to jihadist lore that no one would call the president on it.

The “Khorosan Group” is al-Qaeda. It is simply a faction within the global terror network’s Syrian franchise, “Jabhat al-Nusra.” Its leader, Mushin al-Fadhli (believed to have been killed in this week’s U.S.-led air strikes), was an intimate of Ayman al-Zawahiri, the emir of al-Qaeda who dispatched him to the jihad in Syria. Except that if you listen to administration officials long enough, you come away thinking that Zawahiri is not really al-Qaeda, either. Instead, he’s something the administration is at pains to call “core al-Qaeda.”

Sunday, September 21, 2014

THE ISLAMIC STATE OF
SAUDI ARABIA

by Andrew C. McCarthy

The beheadings over the last several weeks were intended to terrorize, to intimidate, to coerce obedience, and to enforce a construction of sharia law that, being scripturally rooted, is draconian and repressive.

And let’s not kid ourselves: We know there will be more beheadings in the coming weeks, and on into the future. Apostates from Islam, homosexuals, and perceived blasphemers will face brutal persecution and death. Women will be treated as chattel and face institutionalized abuse. Islamic-supremacist ideology, with its incitements to jihad and conquest, with its virulent hostility toward the West, will spew from the mosques onto the streets. We will continue to be confronted by a country-sized breeding ground for anti-American terrorists.

The Islamic State? Sorry, no. I was talking about . . . our “moderate Islamist” ally, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

But the confusion is understandable.

Islamic State terrorists have infamously decapitated three of their prisoners in recent weeks. That is five fewer than the Saudi government decapitated in August alone. Indeed, it is three fewer beheadings than were carried out in September by the Free Syrian Army — the “moderate Islamists” that congressional Republicans have now joined Obama Democrats in supporting with arms and training underwritten by American taxpayer dollars.

The Obama administration regards the Saudi government as America’s key partner in the fight against Islamic State jihadists. The increasingly delusional Secretary of State John Kerry reasons that this is because the fight is more ideological than military. Get it? The world’s leading propagators of the ideology that breeds violent jihad are our best asset in an ideological struggle against violent jihadists.

Aloof as ever from irony, Mr. Kerry gave this assessment while visiting King Abdullah in Riyadh on, of all days, September 11 — the thirteenth anniversary of the day when 15 Saudis joined four other terrorists in mass-murdering nearly 3,000 Americans in furtherance of the Islamic-supremacist ideology on which they were reared. The 19 were, of course, members of al-Qaeda, the jihadist network sprung from Saudi Arabia and its fundamentalist “Wahhabi” Islam.

Secretary Kerry and President Obama, like British prime minister David Cameron, insist that the Islamic State, an al-Qaeda-launched jihadist faction, is not Islamic. Evidently, this is owing to the terrorists’ savage tactics. In essence, however, they are the same tactics practiced by our “moderate Islamist” allies.

Saudi Arabia is the cradle of Islam: the birthplace of Mohammed, the site of the Hijra by which Islam marks time — the migration from Mecca to Medina under siege by Mohammed and his followers. The Saudi king is formally known as the “Keeper of the Two Holy Mosques” (in Mecca and Medina); he is the guardian host of the Haj pilgrimage that Islam makes mandatory for able-bodied believers. The despotic Saudi kingdom is governed by Islamic law — sharia. No other law is deemed necessary and no contrary law is permissible.

It is thus under the authority of sharia that the Saudis routinely behead prisoners.

I happen to own the edition of the Koran “with English Translation of ‘The Meanings and Commentary,’” published at the “King Fahd Holy Qur-an Printing Complex” — Fahd was Abdullah’s brother and predecessor. As the introductory pages explain, this version is produced under the auspices of the regime’s “Ministry of Hajj and Endowments.” In its sura (or chapter) 47, Allah commands Muslims, “Therefore, when ye meet the Unbelievers (in fight), smite at their necks.”

The accompanying English commentary helpfully explains:

When once the fight (Jihad) is entered upon, carry it out with the utmost vigor, and strike home your blows at the most vital points (smite at their necks), both literally and figuratively. You cannot wage war with kid gloves. [Italicized parentheticals in original.]

Sura 8 underscores the point with another of Allah’s exhortations: “I am with you: Give firmness to the Believers: I will instill terror into the hearts of the Unbelievers: Smite ye above their necks and smite ye all their fingertips off them.”

Following the 9/11 attacks, Americans Daniel Pearl and Nick Berg were among prisoners notoriously decapitated by al-Qaeda. Reacting to their beheadings, Timothy Furnish, a U.S. Army veteran with a doctorate in Islamic history, wrote a comprehensive Middle East Quarterly essay on “Beheading in the Name of Islam.” As Dr. Furnish recounted,

The practice of beheading non-Muslim captives extends back to the Prophet himself. Ibn Ishaq (d. 768 C.E.), the earliest biographer of Muhammad, is recorded as saying that the Prophet ordered the execution by decapitation of 700 men of the Jewish Banu Qurayza tribe in Medina for allegedly plotting against him.

As is always the case, the prophet’s example has been emulated by Muslims through the centuries. When Muslims conquered central Spain in the eleventh century, for example, the caliph had 24,000 corpses beheaded; the remains were piled into makeshift minarets atop which muezzins sang the praises of Allah. In more modern times, Furnish adds, “The Ottoman Empire was the decapitation state par excellence” — employing the practice to terrorize enemies for centuries, including, to take just one of many examples, beheading hundreds of British soldiers captured in Egypt in 1807.

A pity Sheikh Cameron was not around back then to correct the caliphate’s understanding of Islam.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

AMNESTY PAVES WAY FOR VOTERS LATER

by Marshall Frank

Amnesty now paves way for voters later

For every action, there is a reaction.

The recent flow of young immigrants from Central America is reminiscent of bygone days in Miami when Fidel Castro opened all his jails and mental institutions and dispatched children, the disabled and other unwanted citizens from the Mariel port so thousands could come to the United States.

While the softhearted press primarily focuses on the many thousands of youths who have been trekking through Mexico and over the Rio Grande, a significant number of these “children” are actually male gangster kids ages 13 to 17 whose contributions to American life will undoubtedly include a bloated crime rate wherever they land. That translates to many American victims.

Much like the coverage of bleeding little kids in Gaza, camera shots of small kids always touch the heartstrings, but it does not present the whole picture.

In 1980, while many good and decent people did arrive on the shores of South Florida during the infamous Mariel boat lift, the fact remains that the community was suddenly overwhelmed with a 120,000 new residents who had nowhere to go other than living under expressway bridges, parks and jails. The crime rate in Dade County tripled overnight. I know, because I was the captain of Homicide in those months and years. We all felt like Lucille Ball trying to keep up with the conveyor belt.

Bodies were turning up everywhere and could not be identified because we had no records of the victims. Rapes and other assaults doubled. Thefts, burglaries, vandalism and murder spiraled beyond the capacity of local resources to handle. The Medical Examiner’s Office had to rent a giant refrigerated trailer to store the accumulation of bodies. Fingerprints were not on file because all the victims and criminals came from another country.

President Jimmy Carter welcomed the refugees with open arms, but he had nothing to say to the victims of rape, assaults, thefts and murders left in the wake.

Many of the new immigrants were shipped to other states for “resettlement,” but that didn’t last long because most of the Cubans remigrated back to Miami, where they felt at home among their cultural peers.

The impact extended beyond criminal issues, as the infrastructure of state and local government was stressed beyond capacity. Schools, medical facilities, traffic, housing, personal necessities, courts, cops, jails and local budgets were unable to cope.

From all reports, the southwest United States, particularly Texas, can expect about 90,000 illegal immigrants this year, costing taxpayers $900 million. Reuters predicts the wave of youth immigration will reach above 130,000 in 2015, costing Americans $2 billion and more. Certainly, there are sad stories among the child immigrants. But rest assured, they are creating a wave of equally sad stories among American citizens and their families as well.

A quarter-million more people invading the United States is like a city larger than the population of Richmond, Virginia, being dumped in your backyard. It is naïve to think it won’t negatively impact the lives of American citizens, the people we are supposed to represent first and foremost.

And while our current administration has basically announced an amnesty pass to any immigrants under 18 who can find their way across our borders, what’s to stop the millions of Africans, Asians, middle-easterners and South Americans who are desperate for a better way of life? Where will this end?

Pardon my cynicism, but I seriously doubt the administration is supporting this influx of mass numbers because of bleeding hearts. They know that, 10 years from now, illegal immigrants who received entitlements will be most appreciative to those who paved the amnesty road to America. They are the future voters of our country. In essence, the political spectrum of America is being carved out for the 21st century. There’s the rub.

It is a clever ruse, indeed.

Monday, September 08, 2014

DESTROY THE
"ISLAMIC STATE"


By John R. Bolton


The recent military successes of the Islamic State, also known as ISIS and ISIL, and the ongoing disintegration of Iraq’s “central” government have created a strategic crisis for the United States. Barack Obama’s belated, narrow authorization to use military force against the Islamic State does not constitute a coherent response, let alone a comprehensive one. The president seems curiously inactive, even as American influence in the region collapses and, not coincidentally, his political-approval ratings suffer. From the outset of the Islamic State’s campaign, his policies have been haphazard and confused, especially the halting, timid decision to intervene militarily. And, based on his record as president, there is no reason to believe a strategic vision of the Middle East’s future will ultimately emerge from his administration.

Approving U.S. military force against the Islamic State on August 7, Obama stressed two limited goals: protecting U.S. civilian and military personnel in Irbil, the Kurdish capital, which the Islamic State was rapidly nearing; and aiding refugees who had fled as the group advanced into Iraq from Syria. These are legitimate objectives, but they are far too constrained even in humanitarian terms, let alone against the serious regional and global strategic threats the Islamic State poses. The approximately 40,000 Yazidis were clearly in dire straits, but their plight had been preceded months earlier by the even greater number of fleeing Christian families. Obama stood by while the Islamic State butchered its way around Iraq.

Although the initial U.S. air strikes provided the refugees breathing space, the Islamic State still basically has the initiative. Ironically, Obama the multilateralist has not yet followed George H. W. Bush’s roadmap after the first Persian Gulf War in assembling an international coalition to achieve his humanitarian objectives. In April 1991, Kurdish refugees fled Saddam Hussein’s repression, and Bush persuaded the U.N. Security Council to adopt Resolution 688, declaring the refugee flows a threat to international peace and security. He then launched Operation Provide Comfort, later supplemented by aid to the Shiites in southern Iraq.
Today’s ongoing tragedy would have been entirely avoidable had Obama not withdrawn U.S. forces from Iraq in 2011. By so doing, he eliminated a considerable element of U.S. leverage in Baghdad, one that had significantly limited Iran’s ability to expand its influence inside Iraq. With substantial U.S. forces still present, Iraq’s various ethnic and confessional groups were more likely to make progress knitting together a sustainable national government and to lessen their profound, longstanding mistrust, which existed well before the Islamic State erupted from Syria.

We must now decide on U.S. strategic objectives in light of the dramatic, albeit still-tenuous, territorial gains by the Islamic State; the unfolding disarray in Iraq’s government; the grinding conflict in Syria; and the looming threats to stability in Lebanon, Jordan, and Turkey. This will require some unpleasant choices, as well as recognition of the obvious reality that many policy options are simply unavailable until Obama leaves office in 2017.

America’s basic objective is clear: We must seek to destroy the Islamic State. It is simply not enough to block the group’s threat to the Kurds or other vulnerable minorities in the region. The risks of even a relatively small “state” (or “caliphate,” as they proclaim it) are chilling. Leaving the Islamic State in place and in control only of its current turf in Iraq and Syria (including northern-Iraqi hydrocarbon deposits and associated infrastructure) would make it viable economically and a fearsome refuge for terrorists of all sorts. Just as Afghanistan’s Taliban gave al-Qaeda a base of operations to launch terrorist attacks culminating in 9/11, a similar result could follow if the Islamic State successfully erased and then redrew existing boundaries.

But, many ask, how can the Islamic State be removed from the territory it now holds without U.S. combat forces’ being centrally involved? Aren’t we too “war weary” to do much of anything? Perhaps, but this is surely a debate worth having. And that debate’s central “organizing principle,” as Hillary Clinton might say, is this: The United States must prevent a new terrorist state from emerging in the Middle East. Period.

If there are American political leaders who are truly content to have this embodiment of evil consolidate its current position, let them say so unambiguously. The vast majority of Americans, however, will be profoundly concerned at the likely consequences for America, Europe, Israel, and our Arab friends in the region if we do nothing. After the Holocaust, we said “Never again,” not “Well, maybe a little.”

Moreover, U.S. forces are already involved, and will need to be involved more substantially until the Islamic State is defeated. But the primary ground combat can be handled by adequately armed and equipped Kurdish peshmerga fighters, Sunni tribal militias in Iraq, and whatever trustworthy, moderate anti-Assad Sunni forces remain. U.S. air power, supplies, and intelligence will be central, but we should seek all possible assistance, including financial support from our allies globally. The recent combined U.S., Kurdish, and Iraqi operations to retake the Mosul dam demonstrate how this could work in practice.

Assuming the Islamic State is decisively defeated (a heroic assumption, given Obama’s passivity), what happens next? In Syria, non-radical Sunni Arabs, while still hoping to oust Bashar al-Assad, are increasingly beleaguered, both by regime forces and by the Islamic State and other radicals. In Iraq, the attempted coup of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, who until recently was backed solidly by Iran, has added to the disarray. His reluctant decision to step aside as prime minister, however, has only removed him from the stage; it has neither reduced Iran’s dominance nor changed the fundamental political disarray among Iraq’s factions. Maliki’s maltreatment of Iraq’s Sunnis aroused such opposition that tribal leaders and former Baathists initially joined with the Islamic State because of their common contempt for the national government. What outcome can we now achieve that would satisfy non-radical Sunnis, not to mention us?

Iraq’s future poses the starkest choice. Obama still clings to the idea of making the collapsing Baghdad government functional. At some much earlier point, conditioning anti–Islamic State aid on the requirement that Iraq’s badly divided factions cooperate might have worked, but no longer. In effect, Washington’s preference that a unified Iraq exist essentially within the international borders it inherited at its independence in 1932 ended with Obama’s 2011 withdrawal of American forces. Iraqi “unity” increasingly seems like a mirage in the foreseeable future and perhaps forever. Just as the Soviet Union and Yugoslavia fragmented into their component parts two decades ago, that is likely what is now happening in Iraq.
Unavoidably, therefore, we must identify what is doable in Iraq rather than what is desirable. We are long past the point of debating “one Iraq” versus “three Iraqs,” because fierce animosities have already split Iraq de facto into Kurdistan and the predominantly Arab remainder. The only outstanding issue is whether the Arab lands will themselves break into two, one largely Sunni, the other largely Shiite.

As things stand, helping to create three Iraqs looks to be America’s best option. Our metric today, looking forward, is not whether the Platonic ideal of a unified, democratic Iraq might once have been achieved, or might yet be achieved unknowable years hence. Instead, we must proceed on the clear-eyed basis of what America’s interests are now, choosing among less-than-ideal options.

First, it is nearly impossible to envision any circumstances in which the Kurds would agree to meaningful participation in an Iraqi central government that attempted to assert real authority over them. The parliamentary charades now on display in Baghdad — where Kurds (and Sunnis as well) agree to divide political offices among Iraq’s factions and otherwise go through the motions of central government — do not constitute serious institution-building. Instead, they merely reflect the pragmatic Kurdish decision not to break de jure from Iraq until that necessity arrives. Behind the play-acting, the Kurds are in reality already independent, and there is no going back.

The real problem for “Kurdistan” is defining its broader boundaries beyond Iraq, given the Kurdish populations in Syria, Iran, and Turkey. Amalgamating the Kurds in Syria and Iraq will be easier than dealing with those in Turkey and Iran. Once a visibly independent Kurdish government exists, excruciatingly hard problems will arise. Kurds in Turkey and Iran will not remain quiescent for long, and Ankara and Tehran will not let them escape easily or painlessly.

Second, though perhaps less definitively than the Kurds, Iraq’s Sunni Arabs show no inclination to cooperate with a Baghdad government they see, correctly, as dominated by Iran. As long as Obama and others press them to pretend that there is a possibility of restitching a national government in Baghdad, the Sunnis may do so, but primarily only to obtain assistance necessary to fight the Islamic State. Obviously, Sunni opposition to the Islamic State is critical to its ultimate defeat.

Until we effectively counter Iran’s increasing dominance in Shiite Iraq — indeed, until we overthrow the ayatollahs in Tehran — we cannot ignore the reality that Iraq’s Sunnis simply will not tolerate domination by an “Iraqi” government Tehran controls in every material respect. Similarly, as with their opposition to al-Qaeda in Iraq during the 2006–07 “surge,” most Iraqi Sunnis have no desire to trade Iranian-backed repression for Islamic State repression.

Third, the Islamic State’s territorial conquests underscore the fragility of all the region’s existing boundaries. By hiving off parts of both Iraq and Syria to create a “caliphate,” the group is portending even more significant redrawing of boundaries, as an unambiguously independent Kurdistan would also do. While we must prevent the Islamic State from forming a new, independent terrorist state composed of Sunni Arabs, there is an acceptable alternative. In broad strokes, a transborder state carved out of Iraq’s and Syria’s current territory is far from undesirable, and is in any event increasingly likely. If rightly established and led by Sunnis acceptable to the United States and our regional allies, a new Sunni state is entirely realistic.

It would mean partitioning Syria, an outcome some have predicted, and leaving Assad with essentially an Alawite enclave in Syria’s western and coastal regions. A stable, “moderate” Sunni state with control over oil assets in northern Iraq equitably divided with the Kurds would also serve to protect Jordan’s eastern border. Northern areas with significant Kurdish populations could join Iraqi Kurds in their new state, and Sunni Arabs would have the rest.

Concededly, this is easier said than done, and drawing new boundaries will be arduous and perhaps ultimately futile. Moreover, creating a new Sunni state will not solve the problem of Iran’s continuing to dominate the regimes governing the rump portions of Syria and Iraq. These projections of Tehran’s power would still threaten those states’ neighbors and provide Iran much-needed allies. Unfortunately, however, Syria’s Assad dictatorship and Iraq’s successor to Maliki will remain relatively secure until the ayatollahs lose power in Tehran.
Regarding Syria, many who advocated aiding the anti-Assad opposition will now contend that, once the Islamic State is on the run, we should seize the moment to topple the dictatorship. The hard reality, however, is that for over three years the Syria conflict has been a strategic sideshow in the larger struggle against Iran. If a moderate, transborder Sunni state emerged, fighting an Assad regime confined to an Alawite enclave would not be worth the risks of Obama’s stumbling around simultaneously confronting Russia and Iran, which both back Assad. If Iran’s ayatollahs and Revolutionary Guards were to fall and be replaced by anything like a sensible government, Assad (not to mention Hezbollah and Hamas) would lose his biggest source of financial and military support. To be sure, Russia would still see Assad as an ally, but without Iran, even Moscow might recalibrate its stakes in Syria. And until Iran flips, as long as Assad retains Russian support, Obama cannot be trusted to face off competently against Moscow.

Any real opportunity to stitch the pieces of Iraq back together will come only when the mullahs next door are eliminated. Unfortunately, however, while most Iraqi Shiites oppose Iran’s domination, they have been ineffective in preventing it, and there is little prospect that this pattern will change.

Obviously, the central problem is not Iran’s surrogates, but Iran itself, America’s main regional adversary. And until the United States confronts the ever more pressing need for regime change in Tehran, we can hardly expect others in the region to have the strength or the will to arrange things to suit our interests. Obama’s obsession with securing a nuclear-weapons deal means the odds that he would support overthrowing the ayatollahs approach zero. The regime is determined to possess nuclear weapons, so appeasing it in Syria, as Obama has done, was never going to cause Tehran to modify its positions in the nuclear talks. Far better to concentrate on regime change in Iran by overtly and covertly supporting the widespread opposition and watch Assad fall as collateral damage thereafter.

These possible outcomes constitute working hypotheses for U.S. objectives flowing from the destruction of the Islamic State. They are not philosophical abstractions, but practical suggestions that could well change as regional circumstances change. What we must not do is take our eye off the critical first step of destroying the Islamic State. Nor can we let theories about the kinds of regimes we would like to see emerge in the region blind us to what may actually be achievable.

Perhaps most important of all, we simply must stop blundering around in the vacuum of strategic thinking Obama has created during his presidency. Real progress must obviously await Obama’s 2017 departure from office, but we should plan now to replace his failed policies.

— Mr. Bolton is a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and a former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. He is the author of Surrender Is Not an Option: Defending America at the United Nations and Abroad. This article appears in the September 8, 2014, issue of National Review.