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Khamenei: USA är fortfarande fienden

Khamenei: U.S.Is The Enemy’; ‘We Must Combat The Plans Of The Arrogance With Jihad , MEMRI, September 1, 2015

 

On August 17, 2015, just over a month after the announcement of the JCPOA in Vienna, Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei said in a speech at a conference held by the Iranian Shi’ite Ahl Al-Bayt organization that the U.S. is the embodiment of the enemy of the Islamic peoples and of Iran. It must be fought with military, cultural, economic, and political jihad, he said, adding that Islamic Iran is not interested in reconciling with it. He further claimed that the U.S. is attempting to divide the Islamic world into Shi’ite and Sunni camps that will wage a religious war against each other, and in this way gain it will be able to gain control over the peoples of the region.[1]

Iran, he stressed, stands behind the resistance axis, opposes the division of Syria and Iraq, and will continue to support anyone who fights Israel.

Following are excerpts from a report on the speech that was posted on Khamenei’s website (Leader.ir):

“[Khamenei said:] ‘We must combat the plans of the arrogance [i.e. the West, led by the U.S.] with jihad for the sake of Allah.’ The Leader pointed to ‘America’s efforts to exploit the results of the nuclear talks and exert economic, political, and cultural influence in Iran’ and to the plots of the power-hungry order aimed at sowing conflict and gaining influence in the region. The Leader called for ‘adopting the correct plans in order to wisely and consistently fight this plot, in an offense against it and a defense against it.’

“[Khamenei said:] ‘Jihad for the sake of God does not only mean military conflict, but also means cultural, economic, and political struggle. The clearest essence of jihad for the sake of God today is to identify the plots of the arrogance in the Islamic region, especially the sensitive and strategic West Asian region. The planning for the struggle against them should include both defense and offense.

“[He continued:] ‘The plots of the arrogance in the region have continued for a century, but [its] pressure and plotting increased after Iran’s Islamic Revolution [1979], in order to prevent [this Revolution] from spreading to other countries. For 35 years, the regime in Iran has been subjected to threats, sanctions, security pressure, and various political plots. The Iranian nation has grown accustomed to this pressure. After the Islamic awakening movement blossomed in recent years in North Africa [i.e. the Arab Spring], the enemy greatly stepped up its plots in the West Asian region because of its panic.

“‘The enemies thought that they could suppress the Islamic awakening movement, but it cannot be suppressed. It continues, and sooner or later it will prove itself as reality.

“‘The power-hungry order led by the United States of America is the perfectly clear embodiment of “the concept of the enemy.” America has no human morality. It carries out evil crimes under the guise of flowery statements and smiles. The enemy’s plot is two pronged: creating conflict and [exerting] influence. [The enemy sows conflict] among governments, and, worse, among the nations. At this stage, they are using the Shi’a and the Sunna to create conflict among the nations. Britain is an expert in sowing conflict; the Americans are its apprentices.

“‘Establishing violent despicable criminal takfiri circles, which the Americans have acknowledged establishing, is the main means of sowing conflict, ostensibly religious conflict, among [the Muslim] nations. Sadly, some innocent and ignorant Muslims have been fooled by this plot, and have been tricked by the enemy and fallen into its trap. Syria is an obvious example of this. When Tunisia and Egypt, with Islamic slogans, ousted their infidel governments, the Americans and Zionists decided to use this formula to eliminate the countries of the resistance, turning their attention to Syria. After the events in Syria began, some ignorant Muslims were tricked by the enemy and dragged Syria to its current situation. What is happening today in Iraq, Syria, Yemen, and other countries, which some people insist on calling “a religious war,” is in no way a war of religion [i.e. Sunni vs. Shi’ite], but a political war. The most important duty today is to remove these conflicts.

“‘I have explicitly stated that Iran reaches out in friendship to all the Islamic governments in the region, and that we have no problem with Muslim governments. Iran has friendly relations with most of its neighbors. Some still have conflicts with us; they are stubborn, and carry out nefarious acts, but Iran aspires to good relations with its neighbors and with the Islamic governments, especially with the governments in the region. The basis for Iran’s conduct comprises the principles laid out by Imam Khomeini, which he used to bring about victory for the Islamic Revolution, and he led it to a phase of stability.

“‘One of the principles of the [Islamic] regime [in Iran] is to be “forceful against the disbelievers, merciful amongst themselves [Koran 48:29].” On the basis of Imam Khomeini’s lesson, we do not wish to reconcile with the arrogance, but we aspire to friendship with our Muslim brothers. When we support [any of] the oppressed, we ignore the religious element; we provide the same aid to our Shi’ite brothers in Lebanon and to our Sunni brothers in Gaza. We see the Palestinian issue as the chief issue of the Islamic world.

“‘There must be no exacerbation of the conflict in the Islamic world. I oppose any conduct, even by Shi’ite circles, that creates conflict. I condemn the insults against the sanctities of the Sunna.

“‘The U.S. has aspired for decades to infiltrate the region and regain its lost reputation. The Americans wish to infiltrate Iran with the [JCPOA]agreement, whose fate in Iran and in the U.S. is still unknown. But we have decisively blocked this path, and we will do anything to keep them from infiltrating Iran economically, politically, and culturally.

“‘Iran’s regional policy is the opposite of America’s. While [America] seeks to divide the countries of the region and to create statelets that obey it, this will not happen. Some were amazed by statements I made in the past about America’s attempt to divide Iraq, but today the Americans themselves honestly acknowledge this. The Americans’ clear goal is to divide Iraq, and, if they can, Syria as well. But the territorial integrity of the countries of the region – Iraq and Syria – is very important to Iran.

“‘Iran supports the resistance in the region, including the Palestinian resistance, and we will support anyone who struggles against Israel and strikes at the Zionist regime. Iran’s chief policy is a struggle against America’s policy of division and its sowing of conflict. We do not recognize the Shi’a that is based in London and works in the service of the arrogance.

“‘In contrast to unfounded claims, Iran is not interfering in Bahrain and Yemen, but will continue to support the oppressed. The massacre of oppressed Yemenis and the destruction of that country must be strictly condemned. Promoting some [Saudi] political goals via foolish methods results in ongoing crimes against the Yemeni people.

“‘There are also painful events in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Muslims must be wise and vigilant, and thus they will solve these problems.

“‘The Islamic Radio and Television Union [organization in Iran] is an important center in the struggle against the dangerous empire of the sophisticated American-Zionist media mafia. We must strengthen and grow this movement…

“‘The future of the region belongs to the Muslim nations. Islam’s might is clear and will be maintained because of the presence of the fighting men and women.’”[2]

_________________

Endnotes:

[1] It should be noted that in the main Friday sermon in Tehran on August 28, 2015, prayer leader Ayatollah Kazem Seddiqi advised the officials in the government of Iranian President Hassan Rohani not to be misled by the West and the U.S. following the JCPOA, because they are “cannibals, liver-eaters, and anti-religion.” Fars, Iran, August 29, 2015.

[2] Leader.ir, August 18, 2015.

Publicerat i Hot mot DEMOKRATI, Iran, Islamister / Jihadister, USA | Lämna en kommentar

Raket från Gasa och oroligheter på Västbanken, Jenin

Rocket from Gaza follows IDF-Palestinian clash in West Bank town of Jenin, DEBKAfile, September 1, 2015

Palestinian rocket fire from the Gaza Strip put southern Israel on red alert before dawn Tuesday. Sept 1 in the wake of a major clash that erupted in the West Bank refugee camp of Jenin Sunday night. The circumstances of that episode are not entirely clear. Israel playing the Jenin encounter down, whereas the Palestinians are presenting it as “the biggest battle of the third initifada.” An Israeli soldier and five Palestinians were injured.

It began, DEBKAfile’s military sources report, when a large combined force of the IDF, Shin Bet and Police Special Operations, riding in dozens of vehicles, entered the Jenin camp Monday night to round up Islamic Jihad and Hamas terrorist suspects. In the Al-Hadaf district, they surrounded the homes of Bassam Al-Saeedi, reputed Jihad chief on the West Bank, and Majdi Abu al-Hejja, a local Hamas military arm operative.

At some point, Israeli rocket fire badly damaged Al-Saeedi’s house.

The IDF sources say it was a single small rocket, without explaining why it was fired. The IDF spokesman first reported “a heavy exchange of fire” around the building. Early Monday, the word “heavy” was dropped from the briefing to reporters and finally, there was no reference to any exchange of fire at all.

The Palestinians claim that the Jihad leader was not at home at the time of the raid and so escaped his pursuers.  But there is no word on either side about the fate of any occupants of building and whether any were killed.

Did the IDF decide to knock the building down in response to gunfire coming out of it? Or was it a warning to the Islamic Jihad and other Palestinian terrorist groups to halt their latest spate of violence or lose their homes?

Another mystery is how Bassam Al-Saeedi came to be away from home, confounding the information reaching the Shin Bet? Did he get a tip-off of the impending Israeli raid for his arrest?

If armed Palestinian groups on the West Bank have taken to posting spotters outside their areas to forewarn them of approaching Israeli forces, this would ratchet up their operational tactics to the military level observed by fellow Hamas and the Islamic Jihad groups in the Gaza Strip.

While Bassam Al-Saheedi escaped arrest, the Hamas operative Majdi Abu al-Hejja and his brother were captured and taken away for interrogation.

In weighing in heavily for a preventive detention operation against suspected terrorist leaders Sunday night, Israeli security chiefs were almost certainly acting on a decision to avert any possible terrorist action for  disrupting the opening of the school year Monday, Sept. 1. The level of Palestinian violence on and from the West Bank and Jerusalem has risen sharply in recent weeks.

Thirteen years ago, at the peak of the Palestinians’ Second intifada, Israel launched a major assault on the Jenin refugee camp. Thirteen Israeli soldiers were lost in this major battle on April 5, 2002. Since then, the refugee camp has claimed to hold the flag of armed Palestinian resistance to Israel and its army. Security forces arriving there to detain suspects routinely come under a hail of rocks and firebombs. However, the current clash of arms represented a sharp escalation in the Israeli-Palestinian confrontation on the West Bank.

Publicerat i Gasa - Hamas, Hot mot DEMOKRATI, Iran, Islamister / Jihadister, Islamska Staten, Israel, Palestina - PLO/Fatah | Lämna en kommentar

Demokraternas tradition av nukleära fiaskon – från Nord Korea till Iran

Nuclear Fiascoes: From Diplomatic Failure With North Korea To Debacle With Iran, Forbes, Claudia Rosett, August 31, 2015

 

[B]oth Clinton and Bush purchased the transient gains of North Korean nuclear deals at the cost of bolstering a North Korean regime that has become vastly more dangerous. . . . Kim Jong Un bestrides a growing arsenal of weapons of mass murder, including chemical and biological, as well as nuclear, plus a growing cyber warfare capability. This is the legacy not least of North Korea’s skill at exploiting the feckless nuclear deals offered by U.S. presidents whose real achievements on this front were to hand off a monstrous and rising threat to the next administration.

Now comes the Iran nuclear deal, which President Obama has described as a perhaps once-in-a-lifetime “historic chance to pursue a safer and more secure world.” And from Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu, leader of America’s closest ally and Iran’s prime target in the Middle East, comes the warning that this deal is a “stunning historic mistake,” configured not to block Iran’s path to the bomb, but to pave the way.

Like the North Korea Agreed Framework, the Iran nuclear deal pivots narrowly on nuclear issues, as if ballistic missiles, terrorism, arms smuggling, gross violations of human rights, blatant declarations of destructive intent and the malign character of the regime itself were irrelevant to the promised “exclusively peaceful” nuclear program.

[I]f this Iran deal goes through, is that we are about to see the mistakes made with North Korea amplified on a scale that augurs not security in the 21st century, but a soaring risk of nuclear war.

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

With Congress due to vote by Sept. 17 on the Iran nuclear deal, there’s a warning worth revisiting. It goes like this: The president is pushing a historic nuclear agreement, saying it will stop a terror-sponsoring tyranny from getting nuclear weapons. And up pipes the democratically elected leader of one of America’s closest allies, to say this nuclear deal is mortal folly. He warns that it is filled with concessions more likely to sustain and embolden the nuclear-weapons-seeking despotism than to disarm it.

This critic has more incentive than most to weigh the full implications of the deal, because his country is most immediately in harm’s way — though it has not been included in the nuclear talks. He notes that the nuclear negotiators have sidelined such glaring issues as human rights, and warns that Washington is naive, and the U.S. is allowing itself to be manipulated by a ruthless dictatorship.

No, the critic I’m referring to is not Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, though he has warned of precisely such dangers in the Iran nuclear deal. I am citing the warnings voiced 21 years ago by the then-President of South Korea, Kim Young Sam, as the Clinton administration bargained its way toward the 1994 nuclear deal with North Korea known as the Agreed Framework.

As it turned out, Kim Young Sam’s misgivings were right on target. The 1994 Agreed Framework did not stop North Korea’s pursuit of the bomb. Instead, it became a pit stop on North Korea’s road to the nuclear arsenal it is amassing today.

For all the differences between North Korea and Iran, there are parallels enough to suggest that the failed 1994 nuclear bargain with North Korea is an excellent guide to the future trajectory with Iran, if the U.S. goes ahead with the nuclear deal — the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action — announced by the U.S., France, Britain, Germany, Russia, China and Iran on July 14 in Vienna.

Recall that in 1994, faced with the threat of North Korea producing plutonium for nuclear weapons, the U.S. sought a diplomatic solution. Taking a cue from an exploratory trip to Pyongyang by former President Jimmy Carter, the Clinton administration wooed North Korea with an offer of lightwater nuclear reactors to be used exclusively for the peaceful production of electricity. All Pyongyang had to do was give up its nuclear bomb program.

As this agreement was taking shape, South Korea’s Kim Young Sam laid out his concerns in an hourlong interview with the New York Times. In the resulting article, dated Oct. 8, 1994, the Times reported: “After weeks of watching in silent frustration as the United States tries to negotiate a halt to North Korea’s nuclear program, President Kim Young Sam of South Korea lashed out at the Clinton administration today in an interview for what he characterized as a lack of knowledge and an overeagerness to compromise.”

The Times article described Kim’s concerns that “compromises might prolong the life of the North Korean government and would send the wrong signal to its leaders.” Kim was quoted as denouncing the deal then in the making as a “half-baked compromise” which would lead to “more danger and peril.”

President Clinton rolled right past that warning. On Oct. 21, 1994, less than two weeks after Kim’s concerns hit the headlines, the U.S. signed the Agreed Framework with North Korea. Clinton praised the deal as “good for the United States, good for our allies, and good for the safety of the entire world.” Promising that the Agreed Framework would reduce the threat of nuclear proliferation, Clinton further lauded the deal as “a crucial step for drawing North Korea into the global community.”

South Koreans and their leaders, in the main, disagreed. But with South Korea dependent on the U.S. superpower for defense against North Korea, Kim Young Sam had little choice but to follow Clinton’s lead. Seoul damned the deal with faint praise. The Associated Press reported: “South Korean Foreign Minister Han Sung-joo said that even though the deal fell short of expectations, it met South Korea’s minimum policy goals.”

History now shows that the chief policy goals served by the Agreed Framework were those of Pyongyang, which racked up a highly successful exercise in nuclear extortion, and carried on, first secretly, then overtly, with its nuclear weapons program. As South Korea’s president had predicted, the Agreed Framework helped fortify Pyongyang’s totalitarian regime, rather than transforming it.

Some of the negotiators involved in that 1994 deal have since argued that while the North Korean agreement eventually collapsed, it did at least delay Pyongyang’s progress toward nuclear weapons. What they tend to omit from that select slice of history is that the Agreed Framework helped rescue a North Korean regime which in 1994 was on the ropes. Just three years earlier, North Korea’s chief patron of decades past, the Soviet Union, had collapsed. The longtime Soviet subsidies to Pyongyang had vanished. China did not yet have the wealth to easily step in. And just three months before the nuclear deal was struck, North Korea’s founding tyrant, Kim Il Sung, died. His son and heir, Kim Jong Il, faced the challenge of consolidating power during a period of famine at home and American superpower ascendancy abroad.

But in the game of nuclear chicken, it was America that blinked. In exchange for North Korea’s promise to freeze and eventually dismantle its nuclear weapons program, the U.S. agreed to lead a $4.6 billion consortium to build two lightwater reactors for North Korea, and provide shipments of free heavy fuel oil for heating and electricity production while the new reactors were being built. This was augmented by U.S. security guarantees, easing of sanctions and promises to move toward normalizing diplomatic relations, with generous food aid thrown in.

By the late 1990s, just a few years into the deal, North Korea had become the largest recipient of U.S. aid in East Asia. That did not curb Kim Jong Il’s hostile ways. The Pyongyang regime put the interests of its military and its weapons programs before the needs of its starving population. In 1998, North Korea launched a long-range missile over Japan, a test for which it was hard to discern any purpose other than developing a vehicle to carry nuclear weapons. By that time, as a number of former Clinton administration officials have since confirmed, the U.S. was seeing signs that North Korea was cheating on the nuclear deal by pursuing a secret program for uranium enrichment.

Instead of confronting North Korea, Clinton during his last two years in office tried to double down on his crumbling nuclear deal by pursuing a missile deal with Pyongyang. In 2000, that led to an exchange of high-ranking officials, in which the Clinton administration dignified North Korea with the unprecedented move of welcoming one of its top-ranking military officials, Vice Marshal Jo Myong Rok, to a 45-minute sitdown with Clinton at the White House. Clinton then dispatched Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, together with the administration’s special advisor for North Korea policy, Wendy Sherman, to Pyongyang (yes, the same Wendy Sherman recently employed by Obama as chief negotiator of the Iran nuclear deal). Sherman and Albright brought North Korea’s Kim Jong Il a basketball signed by star player Michael Jordan; Kim entertained them with a stadium flip-card depiction of a long-range missile launch. There was no missile deal.

North Korea continued raking in U.S. largesse until late 2002, when the Bush administration finally confronted Pyongyang over its nuclear cheating. North Korea then walked away from the 1994 deal (on which it had by then been cheating for years), withdrew from the Non-Proliferation Treaty (on which it had also been cheating) and began reprocessing plutonium from the spent fuel rods which despite the 1994 deal had never been removed from its Yongbyon nuclear complex. President Bush then made his own stab at nuclear diplomacy, via the Six-Party Talks. North Korea punctuated that process in Oct. 2006 with its first nuclear test. In 2007, the Bush administration led the way to a Six-Party denuclearization deal with North Korea, bull-dozing ahead even after it became clear that North Korea had been helping Syria build a secret copy of North Korea’s plutonium-producing Yongbyon reactor (destroyed in Sept. 2007 by an Israeli air strike). Once again, North Korea took the concessions, cheated on the deal and in late 2008 walked away.

Since Obama took office, North Korea has carried out its second and third nuclear tests, in 2009 and 2013; restarted its plutonium-producing reactor at Yongbyon; and in 2010 unveiled a uranium enrichment plant, which appears to have since at least doubled in size. Having equipped itself with both uranium and plutonium pathways to the bomb, North Korea is now making nuclear weapons, and developing increasingly sophisticated missiles — including long-range — to deliver them.

In sum, both Clinton and Bush purchased the transient gains of North Korean nuclear deals at the cost of bolstering a North Korean regime that has become vastly more dangerous. When Kim Jong Il died in late 2011, North Korea’s regime managed a second transition of power, to third-generation Kim family tyrant Kim Jong Un — who was described last year by the commander of U.S. Forces in Korea, General Curtis Scaparrotti, as “overconfident and unpredictable.” Kim Jong Un bestrides a growing arsenal of weapons of mass murder, including chemical and biological, as well as nuclear, plus a growing cyber warfare capability. This is the legacy not least of North Korea’s skill at exploiting the feckless nuclear deals offered by U.S. presidents whose real achievements on this front were to hand off a monstrous and rising threat to the next administration.

Now comes the Iran nuclear deal, which President Obama has described as a perhaps once-in-a-lifetime “historic chance to pursue a safer and more secure world.” And from Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu, leader of America’s closest ally and Iran’s prime target in the Middle East, comes the warning that this deal is a “stunning historic mistake,” configured not to block Iran’s path to the bomb, but to pave the way.

There are surely dissertations to be written on the intricate differences between the North Korea Agreed Framework and the Iran nuclear deal now before Congress. But important and alarming similarities abound.

Like the North Korea deal, the Iran deal dignifies a despotic, murderous regime, and provides its worst elements with relief from economic distress, via a flood of rejuvenating resources. In North Korea’s case, the main help arrived in the form of aid. In oil-rich Iran’s case, it comes in the far more lucrative form of sanctions relief, including access to an estimated $55 billion or more (by some estimates, two or three times that amount) in currently frozen funds held abroad.

Like the North Korea Agreed Framework, the Iran nuclear deal pivots narrowly on nuclear issues, as if ballistic missiles, terrorism, arms smuggling, gross violations of human rights, blatant declarations of destructive intent and the malign character of the regime itself were irrelevant to the promised “exclusively peaceful” nuclear program.

Like the North Korea deal, the Iran deal comes loaded with incentives for the U.S. administration to protect its own diplomatic claims of success by ignoring signs of cheating. Monitoring of nuclear facilities is shunted to the secretive International Atomic Energy Agency, which has no power of enforcement, and will have to haggle with Iran for access to suspect sites.

Like Clinton with North Korea, Obama chose to frame the Iran deal not as a treaty, but as an executive agreement, performing an end-run around vigorous dissent within Congress by submitting the deal pronto for approval by the United Nations Security Council. In the North Korean case, the Security Council gave its unanimous blessing in the form of a presidential statement. In the Iran case, the Obama administration drafted a resolution which the Security Council unanimously approved. Having hustled the deal directly to the U.N., despite legislation meant to ensure Congress a voice, Obama administration officials are now pressuring Congress to defer to the U.N.

To be sure, there are two highly significant differences between the 1994 North Korea deal and the 2015 Iran deal. Iran, with its oil wealth, location in the heart of the Middle East, messianic Islamic theocracy and global terror networks, is even more dangerous to the world than North Korea. And, bad as the North Korea deal was, the Iran deal is much worse. Along with its secret side agreements and its promises to lift the arms embargo on Iran in five years and the missile embargo in eight, this deal lets Iran preserve its large illicitly built nuclear infrastructure and carry on enriching uranium, subject to constraints that will be problematic to enforce, and are themselves limited by sunset clauses that even North Korea never managed to obtain at the bargaining table.

When Israel’s Netanyahu spoke this past March to a joint meeting of Congress, warning that the Iran nuclear deal would lead to “a much more dangerous Iran, a Middle East littered with nuclear bombs and a countdown to a potential nuclear nightmare,” Obama dismissed that speech as “nothing new.” That’s true, in the sense that we have heard similar warnings before. What’s new, if this Iran deal goes through, is that we are about to see the mistakes made with North Korea amplified on a scale that augurs not security in the 21st century, but a soaring risk of nuclear war.

Publicerat i Hot mot DEMOKRATI, Iran, Islamister / Jihadister, Islamska Staten, Israel, Korea / Nordorea, USA | Lämna en kommentar

Iranlobbyn i Vita Huset

Meet the Iran Lobby, Tablet MagazineLee Smith, September 1, 2015

In part, Parsi and NIAC’s relative anonymity is the work of a White House that would rather pretend that there is no Iran Lobby, in accordance with the standard Beltway wisdom that a “lobby” is any group of people who advocate things that you are opposed to (lobbies that advocate things you are for are known as “supporters”). But the White House surely knows better, in part because so many friends and graduates of the Iran Lobby now staff key Iran-related government posts. The White House’s Iran desk officer, Sahar Nowrouzzadeh, for example, is a former NIAC employee. NIAC’s advisory board includes two former U.S. diplomats, Thomas Pickering, a former ambassador to Israel, and John Limbert, who was held hostage by the revolutionary regime in 1979. 

Most important, of course, Parsi found common cause with a White House that believed the same things he did: The United States and Iran should be closer, and all that was preventing rapprochement was Israel and AIPAC. “NIAC didn’t really need to write their talking points anymore,” said Dai. “Because they were coming from the White House.

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

Trita Parsi, the Iranian-born émigré who moved to the United States in 2001 from Sweden, where his parents found refuge before the Islamic Revolution,should be the toast of Washington these days. As I argued in Tablet magazine several years ago, Parsi is an immigrant who in classic American fashion wanted to capitalize on the opportunity to reconcile his new home and his birthplace. And now he’s done it: The founder and president of the National Iranian American Council (NIAC), the tip of the spear of the Iran Lobby, has won a defining battle over the direction of American foreign policy. The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action not only lifts sanctions on Iran, a goal Parsi has fought for since 1997, but also paves the way for a broader reconciliation between Washington and Tehran across the Middle East.

In Washington, to have the policies you advocate implemented with the full backing of the president counts as a huge victory. Winning big like this means power as well as access to more money, which flows naturally to power and augments it—enhancing reputations and offering the ability to reward friends and punish enemies. And yet, Parsi (who declined comment for this story) has got to be frustrated that very few in the halls of American power—either in government or in the media—are celebrating the Iran lobby for its big win. It seems the only thing people can talk about is the big loser in this fight over Middle East policy—the pro-Israel lobby, led by AIPAC. It’s as if Parsi and NIAC had nothing to do with the Obama Administration’s decision to move closer to Iran while further distancing itself from Israel.

“It’s a huge win for NIAC,” said one Iranian-American analyst who requested anonymity. “Every other part of Iranian-American advocacy—from the Mujahedin-e Khalq, to the washed-up old monarchists—is useless, and then in comes Trita and he’s slick, presentable, and knows how to build an impressive network.” So, why is the rise of the Iran Lobby both Washington’s biggest and also its least-heralded success story of the past six years?

In part, Parsi and NIAC’s relative anonymity is the work of a White House that would rather pretend that there is no Iran Lobby, in accordance with the standard Beltway wisdom that a “lobby” is any group of people who advocate things that you are opposed to (lobbies that advocate things you are for are known as “supporters”). But the White House surely knows better, in part because so many friends and graduates of the Iran Lobby now staff key Iran-related government posts. The White House’s Iran desk officer, Sahar Nowrouzzadeh, for example, is a former NIAC employee. NIAC’s advisory board includes two former U.S. diplomats, Thomas Pickering, a former ambassador to Israel, and John Limbert, who was held hostage by the revolutionary regime in 1979. Past speakers at NIAC leadership conferences include Joe Biden’s National Security Adviser Colin Kahl, and the White House’s Middle East Director Rob Malley. Other past speakers from the political realm include: Robert Hunter, former U.S. ambassador to NATO; PJ Crowley, State Deptartment spokesperson under Hillary Clinton; Hans Blix, former director general of the IAEA. Other reputable names include figures like Aaron David Miller from the Wilson Center, Robert Pape from the University of Chicago, and Suzanne Maloney from the Brookings Institution.

Indeed, the impressive roster of speakers at NIAC events is evidence of Parsi’s assiduous cultivation of friendly contacts, both here and in Iran. The biggest NIAC booster in academia is the author of The Israel Lobby himself, Harvard University’s Steven Walt. The in-house portion of Parsi’s network also includes public intellectuals, like Iranian-American authors Hooman Majd and Reza Aslan, as well as figures from Iranian business concerns, like Atieh Bahar, who are reportedly close to the Iranian regime, especially former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani.

According to a deeply informed video series posted earlier this month by Iranian-American activist Hassan Dai, Parsi has partnered with Atieh Bahar since the very beginning of his career as an Iran lobbyist in order to promote a pro-trade agenda, which of course will inevitably help the regime. (In 2008, Parsi sued Dai, claiming he had “defamed them in a series of articles and blog posts claiming that they had secretly lobbied on behalf of the Iranian regime in the United States.” The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbiafound in 2012 the work of NIAC, which wasn’t registered under the Foreign Agents Registration Act, “not inconsistent with the idea that he was first and foremost an advocate for the regime.”) “Parsi believed that what stood between U.S.-Iran trade and dialogue,” said Dai, “was AIPAC.”

NIAC not only modeled itself after AIPAC, Dai said, it waged a crusade against it. “Back in 2004 Parsi gave a talk to European ambassadors saying that Israel and AIPAC stood between better relations between the United States and Iran. That turned into his dissertation at Johns Hopkins and later his [2007] bookTreacherous Alliance: The Secret Dealings of Israel, Iran, and the US.”

As it happens, Parsi was able to tap into a pool of support for his ideas. According to NIAC’s financial statement, the majority of the organization’s money comes from community support, while a portion comes from foundations, like the Ploughshares Fund, which has spent lots of money to influence U.S. policy toward Iran—“millions of dollars,” according to Michael Rubin writing for Commentary, “to pro-administration groups to support whatever Iran deal came out of Vienna.”

Most important, of course, Parsi found common cause with a White House that believed the same things he did: The United States and Iran should be closer, and all that was preventing rapprochement was Israel and AIPAC. “NIAC didn’t really need to write their talking points anymore,” said Dai. “Because they were coming from the White House.”

To push through the Iran deal, the White House, including the president himself, waged a brutal campaign against the prime minister of Israel and the pro-Israel community, even, some have argued, accusing JCPOA opponent Sen. Chuck Schumer of dual loyalty. Parsi, some of whose anti-Israel sentiments have previously been documented, followed suit. Most recently, he suggested that the Associated Press had printed an Israeli forgery of an IAEA agreement with Iran that allowed the Islamic Republic to self-inspect its Parchin military base. When AP reporters and others on Twitter challenged Parsi’s absurd allegation slandering a trusted Western news source, the Iran lobby chief backed down—but not before he’d put his obsession with Israel and Jewish power on full display.

NIAC, whose direct expenditure of a little over a million dollars is a tiny fraction of AIPAC’s Iran deal campaign budget, won because it was aligned with the White House. And instead of boasting and posturing about his power and top-level access, as AIPAC is wont to do, Parsi understood his role. Like J Street, NIAC was cast to play second banana to the President’s star turn and stay close to the White House and make the case to journalists and other intellectuals who weren’t already sold on the idea of rapprochement with Iran—and on the idea that Israel is a big problem for the United States.

The paradox is that Parsi deserves lots of credit for his victory, but he can’t cash his checks too publicly—because the American public doesn’t like Iran. Which in turn points up a major difference between the pro-Israel lobby and the pro-Iran lobby—both of which, I want to add, contrary to critics on both the left and the right, make entirely legitimate use of the American democratic system to advocate for their respective points of view.

Where NIAC differs from AIPAC is in its relation to American public opinion. AIPAC has never been about selling access to the Israeli economy: In fact, AIPAC piggy-backed on the huge well-spring of affection that the American public has for Israel in order to establish itself as a power in Washington. If Americans want to invest in an IT firm in Herzliya, or a gift shop in Tzfat, donating money to AIPAC is unlikely to be of much help: They’re free to take their chances and fight through the red tape. Nor is it clear that pursuing exciting economic opportunities in Israel has ever been a particular motivating force for pro-Israel activism. The pro-Israel lobby never sold anything except the opportunity for Americans—Jews, evangelical Christians, and mainstream Democrats and Republicans alike—to feel even better about supporting something they already felt good about, for personal, ethnic, ideological, religious, sentimental, and other such reasons.

The pro-Iran lobby on the other hand has no real base of popular support in America: Many Iranians in America are in fact deeply opposed to the regime in Tehran, and see NIAC as a regime tool. What NIAC has to offer instead, like the Saudi lobby before it, is access, which is a big reason why Parsi has been fighting sanctions for nearly two decades. For an Iran Lobby to have any heft, it needs to be able to deliver the goods to its supporters. With sanctions, the Iran Lobby has been largely crippled, because it has very little to offer: It was able to accumulate the power it has now only because the Administration clearly signaled its desire to do business with Iran, thereby offering NIAC supporters at least some mathematical expectation of a future payout. Now, if the JCPOA gets through Congress, that payout is likely to be tremendous, as the Iran Lobby will be able to help broker access to anything and everything in Iran—from industry, to schools, to opportunities for journalists and academics, etc.—which will in turn make NIAC and the Iran Lobby that much more powerful.

One of the chief ironies of the ongoing debate over the Iran deal is that both defenders and detractors of a supposedly all-powerful “Israel Lobby” have been wasting their breath over an entity that has notably failed to affect U.S. policy on a single issue of major concern over the entire course of Obama’s 6-year Presidency—a record of unmitigated failure that would clearly condemn it to the black hole of Beltway irrelevance if not for the bizarre imaginative hold, and political utility, of the myth of a powerful conspiracy of Jews who secretly rule the planet. Or perhaps it’s not an irony at all. Some of the loudest detractors of the “Israel Lobby” are in fact paid staffers and partisans of the Iran Lobby—an entity that, unlike the Israel Lobby, has succeeded in radically altering U.S. foreign policy, with the help of the President and his advisors. Seen from a certain angle, the Iran Lobby has pulled off the neat trick of using the specter of the Israel Lobby to shift U.S. policy away from Israel and toward Iran—while actually succeeding at the same dark arts that it blames the Jews for employing. The Iran lobby used a combination of lobbying, donations, propaganda, and back-door personal connections to top policy-makers to radically alter American foreign policy, and align the United States with an oppressive authoritarian regime that is destabilizing the Middle East.

Publicerat i Hot mot DEMOKRATI, Iran, Islamister / Jihadister, Islamska Staten, USA | Lämna en kommentar

ISIS grillar shiiter

Chained upside down and burned alive: ISIS forces four Iraqi Shia prisoners to watch flames inch toward them in latest horrific killing

  • Four Iraqi men are accused of spying for the Shi’a resistance against ISIS
  • The men are forced to wear orange boiler suits and are chained up
  • They are forced to watch as a trail of petrol is lit and heads towards them
  • The horrific video shows the men being burnt alive in Anbar, Iraq 

ISIS have burnt to death four Iraqi men by chaining them upside down and setting fire to a trail of petrol that engulfed them in flames.

The four men, who are chained around their wrists and ankles, are forced to watch as the flames lick towards them after a  masked ISIS militant used a large torch to set fire to them.

It is the latest horrific propaganda video to be released by the brutal jihadi group.

Horrific: The four men were strung up by metal chains and forced to wait for their agonising death

Terrible: The prisoners’ orange boiler suits appear to be soaked in fuel prior to their deaths

Forced to wear orange boiler suits, the four prisoners each introduce themselves to the camera, giving their names and a brief description of their role in fighting ISIS.

Underneath the men, a line of fuel has been poured and slight patches of straw have been added in preparation for the flames.

The video shows slow motion footage as the fire begins to burn up the line of fuel, heading rapidly towards the men.

The final few seconds of footage are too graphic to publish as the men are agonisingly burnt to death by the flames.

Prior to their deaths, the prisoners are made to watch several videos showing the mutilation of the bodies of dead ISIS fighters by members of the Iraqi army and allied Shi’a militias.

Final moments: The flames race through the fuel towards the men and horrifically burn them to death

Victims: All four men are shown at the beginning of the video, where they introduce themselves to the camera

Victims: All four men are shown at the beginning of the video, where they introduce themselves to the camera

Painful: The victims were forced to watch videos of Shi'a paramilitary forces burning ISIS corpses

Painful: The victims were forced to watch videos of Shi’a paramilitary forces burning ISIS corpses

All four prisoners are Shia Muslims and are accused with siding with the Iranian backed Shiite militias

No escape: Each of the men are led into the desert by an ISIS militant, dressed all in black uniform

No escape: Each of the men are led into the desert by an ISIS militant, dressed all in black uniform

Final moments: The men were forced to bend low as they march towards the site where they will be put to death

Final moments: The men were forced to bend low as they march towards the site where they will be put to death

One video shows the corpse of a dead jihadi hanging upside down as several soldiers, thought to be members of the Iraqi army, watch as the body is set on fire.

The prisoners are also shown footage of Abu Azrael hacking the flesh off the body of a charred ISIS fighter.

Known by the nom de guerre Abu Azrael, Ayyub al-Rubaie is the well known poster boy of the Imam Ali Brigade, an Iranian backed brigade fighting with the Iraqi army against ISIS.

He is shown using a large sword to carve at the dead body and turns to the camera, saying: ‘ISIS this will be your fate, we will cut you like shawarma.’

Masked militants stand behind the prisoners as the leader of the group announces their crimes

Masked militants stand behind the prisoners as the leader of the group announces their crimes

Wearing all black, one of the militants uses a torch to set fire to a trail of fuel leading to the men's death

Wearing all black, one of the militants uses a torch to set fire to a trail of fuel leading to the men’s death

Publicerat i Iran, Shia islam, Sunni islam, Islamister / Jihadister, Saudiarabien, Hot mot DEMOKRATI, Islamska Staten | Lämna en kommentar

Tysklands muslimska demografiska revolution

Germany’s Muslim Demographic Revolution, The Gatestone Institute, Soeren Kern, August 31, 2015

  • The surge in Germany’s Muslim population — propelled by a wave of migration unprecedented since the Second World War — represents a demographic shift of epic proportions, one that critics of the country’s open-door immigration policy warn will change the face of Germany forever.
  • “There are 20 million refugees waiting at the doorstep of Europe.” — Johannes Hahn, EU Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations.
  • According to Aiman Mazyek, head of the Central Council of Muslims in Germany, attendance at many mosques has doubled in the past month alone.
  • A large number (40%) are from countries in the Balkans, including Albania and Kosovo. This implies that nearly half of those arriving in Germany are economic migrants, not refugees fleeing war zones. — Thomas De Maizière, German Interior Minister.
  • Muslim men residing in Germany routinely take advantage of the social welfare system by bringing two, three or four women from across the Muslim world to Germany, and then marrying them in the presence of an imam. Once in Germany the women request social welfare benefits, including the cost of a separate home for themselves and for their children, on the claim of being a “single parent with children.” — From an exposé broadcast by RTL television.
  • “For us today, what is at stake is Europe, the lifestyle of European citizens, European values, the survival or disappearance of European nations, and more precisely formulated, their transformation beyond recognition. Today, the question is not merely in what kind of a Europe we would like to live, but whether everything we understand as Europe will exist at all.” — Viktor Orbán, President of Hungary.

Germany’s Muslim population is set to skyrocket by more than 700,000 in 2015, pushing the total number of Muslims in the country to nearly 6 million for the first time.

The surge in Germany’s Muslim population — propelled by a wave of migration unprecedented since the Second World War — represents a demographic shift of epic proportions, one that critics of the country’s open-door immigration policy warn will change the face of Germany forever.

At a press conference on August 19, German Interior Minister Thomas de Maizière revealed that a record 800,000 migrants and refugees — the equivalent of nearly one percent of Germany’s total population — are expected to arrive in Germany in 2015, a four-fold increase over 2014. He said that 83,000 migrants had arrived in July alone, and that the figure for August would be higher still.

De Maizière said that although many of the migrants are from the Middle East and North Africa, a large number (40%) are from countries in the Balkans, including Albania and Kosovo. This implies that nearly half of those arriving in Germany are economic migrants, not refugees fleeing war zones.

1229According to German public broadcaster Deutsche Welle, the Berlin refugee center pictured here receives up to 2000 applications for asylum per day. (Image source: Deutsche Welle video screenshot)

Of the 800,000 migrants and refugees arriving in Germany in 2015, at least 80% (or 640,000) are Muslim, according to a recent estimate by the Central Council of Muslims in Germany (Zentralrat der Muslime in Deutschland, ZMD), a Muslim umbrella group based in Cologne. This estimate is not in dispute.

In addition to the newcomers, the natural rate of population increase of the Muslim community already living in Germany is approximately 1.6% per year (or 77,000), according to data extrapolated from a recent Pew Research Center study on the growth of the Muslim population in Europe.

Based on Pew projections, the Muslim population of Germany reached an estimated 5,068,000 by the end of 2014. The 640,000 Muslim migrants arriving in Germany in 2015, combined with the 77,000 natural increase, indicates that the Muslim population of Germany will jump by 717,000, to reach an estimated 5,785,000 by the end of 2015. This would leave Germany with the highest Muslim population in Western Europe.

By way of comparison, the surge in Germany’s Muslim population would be equivalent to the Muslim population of the United States increasing by 3 million in just one year.

Critics say that German officials, under pressure to solve Europe’s migration crisis, are ignoring the long-term consequences of taking in so many migrants from the Middle East and North Africa.

In addition to security concerns (Islamic radicals are almost certainly trying to enter Germany disguised as refugees), they say, the surge in Muslim immigration will accelerate the Islamization of Germany, a process that is already well under way.

Islam is the fastest growing religion in post-Christian Germany. This is evidenced by the fact that an increasing number of churches in Germany are being converted into mosques, some of which are publicly sounding calls to prayer (the adhan) from outdoor loudspeaker systems. The increase is such that some neighborhoods in Germany evoke the sights and sounds of the Muslim Middle East.

Islamic Sharia law is advancing rapidly throughout Germany, with Sharia courts now operating in all of Germany’s big cities. This “parallel justice system” is undermining the rule of law in Germany, experts warn, but government officials are “powerless” to do anything about it. At the same time, German judges are increasingly referring and deferring to Sharia law in German law courts.

Polygamy, although illegal under German law, is commonplace among Muslims in all major German cities. In Berlin, for example, it is estimated that fully one-third of the Muslim men living in the Neukölln district of the city have two or more wives.

According to an exposé broadcast by RTL, one of Germany’s leading media companies, Muslim men residing in Germany routinely take advantage of the social welfare system by bringing two, three or four women from across the Muslim world to Germany, and then marrying them in the presence of an imam (Muslim religious leader). Once in Germany the women request social welfare benefits, including the cost of a separate home for themselves and for their children, on the claim of being a “single parent with children.”

Although the welfare fraud committed by Muslim immigrants is an “open secret” costing German taxpayers millions of euros each year, government agencies are reluctant to take action due to political correctness, according to RTL.

Spiraling levels of violent crime perpetrated by shiftless immigrants from the Middle East and the Balkans have turned parts of German cities into “areas of lawlessness” — areas that are de facto “no-go” zones for police.

In Wuppertal, groups of bearded Muslim radicals calling themselves the “Sharia Police” have tried to enforce Islamic law on the streets by distributing yellow leaflets that explain the Islamist code of conduct in the city’s Sharia zones. In Hamburg, Muslim radicals have infiltrated dozens of primary and secondary schools, where they are imposing Islamic norms and values on non-Muslim students and teachers.

In Berlin, local officials have waived rules prohibiting religious dress in public buildings so that Muslim women can wear headscarves. In Bavaria, Muslim children are being exempted from mandatory visits to former concentration camps as part of Holocaust education programs.

In Bremen, city officials signed an agreement with the city’s 40,000-strong Muslim community. The agreement guarantees the protection of Muslim community properties, the approval of the construction of mosques with minarets and domes, the allotment of land for Muslim cemeteries, the supply of halal food at prisons and hospitals, the recognition of three Muslim holidays, Muslim representation in state institutions and other rights and privileges.

More than 700 German Muslims have joined the Islamic State and traveled to Syria and Iraq, and some of them have continued to receive welfare benefitsfrom the German state while on the battlefields of the Middle East. Jihadists who have returned to Germany and pose an acute threat to national security threat are nevertheless eligible to receive benefits once again.

Germany is home to more than 7,000 Salafists who adhere to a branch of radical Islam that is vehemently opposed to Germany’s democratic order. German officials say that 1,000 of these individuals are especially dangerous (some are believed to have joined sleeper cells) and could attack at any time.

At the same time, however, Salafists are allowed to openly proselytize on German streets to find new recruits and thereby increase their numbers. In a recent recruitment initiative, Salafists launched an unprecedented nationwide campaign, “A Koran in Every Home,” to distribute 25 million copies of the Koran, translated into the German language, to every household in Germany, free of charge.

And yet the guardians of German multiculturalism have been working overtime to silence critics of the rise of Islam in Germany. In Bavaria, for example, German activists opposed to the construction of a mega-mosque in Munich have been classified as “extremists” and are being monitored by German intelligence.

German media consistently accuse commentators on the rise of Islam of engaging in hate speech, in an underhanded effort to try to intimidate them into silence. A particular object of wrath is a very popular German-language website called Politically Incorrect (PI), which over the years has grown into a major information resource for people concerned about the spread of Islam in Germany. PI’s motto reads “Against the Mainstream, Pro-American, Pro-Israel, Against the Islamization of Europe.” Not surprisingly, German media elites want PI shut down.

It is quite possible that German Chancellor Angela Merkel — who recentlyadmitted that German multiculturalism has failed — views mass immigration from the Muslim world as the solution to Germany’s collapsing birth rate, which is among the lowest in the world.

The German government expects the population to shrink from roughly 81 million today to 67 million in 2060, although Germany’s statistics office, Destatis, recently reported that high levels of immigration would cause the country’s population to shrink more slowly than previously expected.

A study by the Hamburg-based World Economy Institute has warned that the low birthrate threatens the long-term viability of the German economy. “No other industrial country is deteriorating at this speed despite the strong influx of young migrant workers,” the report said. “Germany cannot continue to be a dynamic business hub in the long-run without a strong jobs market.”

Germany will need to do a far better job of integrating immigrants if they are to be a net gain for the German economy. A recent study by the Cologne Institute for Economic Research showed that Muslim immigrants were more likely to be unemployed and living off the social welfare state than any other migrant group in Germany. The report said that root cause for the high unemployment rates is the lack of educational attainment and job training qualifications.

Meanwhile, the migration crisis shows no sign of abating. At a summit on migration held in Vienna on August 27, the EU Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, Johannes Hahn, said: “There are 20 million refugees waiting at the doorstep of Europe. Ten to 12 million in Syria, 5 million Palestinians, 2 million Ukrainians and about 1 million in the southern Caucasus.”

On August 21, Germany suspended the so-called Dublin Regulation — a law that requires people seeking refuge within the EU to do so in the first European country they reach — for asylum seekers from Syria. This means that Syrians reaching Germany will be allowed to stay while their applications are being processed. Critics say the move will encourage even more migrants to make their way to Germany.

Most Germans seem to be unfazed by what is happening to their country. An August 21 poll for German broadcaster ZDF showed that 60% of Germans thought their country could cope with the high number of refugees, and 86% said that Germany was a country of immigration.

In an interview with the newspaper Der Tagesspiegel, Aiman Mazyek, the head of the Central Council of Muslims in Germany, said that so many Muslims have been flowing into the country that attendance at many mosques has doubled in the past month alone. Commenting on the demographic revolution sweeping Germany, Mazyek summed it up with an understatement: “The number of Muslims in Germany will increase significantly.”

In nearby Hungary, President Viktor Orbán has been one of the few European heads of state to sound the alarm. “A year ago I said that we live in times when anything can happen, and I still say so today,” he said recently. “Who would have thought that Europe would not be capable of protecting its own borders against unarmed refugees?” He added:

“For us today, what is at stake is Europe, the lifestyle of European citizens, European values, the survival or disappearance of European nations, and more precisely formulated, their transformation beyond recognition. Today, the question is not merely in what kind of a Europe we would like to live, but whether everything we understand as Europe will exist at all.”

Publicerat i Islamister / Jihadister, Världsekonomin, Hot mot DEMOKRATI, EU Europa, Islamska Staten | Lämna en kommentar