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It would appear that New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s vocal support for the Ground Zero mosque – not only did he come out in favor of it, he labeled opponents as un-American – is coming back to haunt him. Some leaders of New York’s Muslim community apparently believe he will bend over backward to accommodate their concerns, however wrongheaded.
Several months ago, the Associated Press reported in a series of articles that the New York Police Department, following 9/11, was working together with the Central Intelligence Agency in a program of surveillance of Muslim neighborhoods and institutions in order to track people of interest and incipient threats. Muslim leaders promptly complained about racial profiling, and several very publicly boycotted an annual mayoral interfaith meeting as a way of registering their protest. The mayor and the police commissioner, Ray Kelly, strongly denied the accusations in the articles and the complaints, insisting the NYPD did not target Muslims, but simply followed leads.
We are reminded of the response attributed to the notorious bank robber Willie Sutton (but which he claimed he never said) when a reporter asked him why he seemed so obsessed with robbing banks: “Because that’s where the money is.”
We do not deny that the NYPD/CIA project is a departure from the reactive approach to law enforcement we all grew up with. The challenges posed by Muslim extremists who blend in with law-abiding citizens of the Muslim faith are a different order of business than the lone felon of yore. Plainly, what constitutes reasonable cause for police action had to change unless we were prepared to commit suicide.
Notwithstanding the anger of Muslim leaders, since 9/11 and the inception of NYPD/CIA cooperation, there has not been one successful terrorist incident here, though several attempts were thwarted. Nor do we know of any wholesale targeting of individual Muslims.
To be sure, as members of a minority group we are always anxious about any expansion of police powers, especially when they could be subverted by people of ill-will. But Michael Bloomberg and Ray Kelly are not threats to the liberty of any New Yorker, and no amount of grandstanding will change that fundamental fact.
Plainly, the importuning of the Muslim leaders is meant to intimidate the mayor into abandoning the program. If he were to do so, it would put the city and its residents at immeasurably greater risk – and constitute as impeachable an offense as anything we can think of.
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If the eyes are the window to the soul, then children’s eyes are the window to the Almighty Himself.
Adding Turkey to the list of volatile states would mean even more uncertainty for Israel.
Is there no one who remembers this recent history?
Making Rouhani the president was a brilliant strategic move for Khamene’i.
Noone, least of all me, wants to see any Arab child suffer, God forbid.
The Sanctuary was built with an ezrat nashim, a separate area for women.
The 686 men who expressed their desire to run in Iran’s presidential election were whittled down to 8.
Every American child seems to be on Ritalin and Israelis are imitating them.
The weapons will be given to people whose politics encompass hatred for Jews, Christians, the West generally, and Women.
Rohani’s election positions the regime to cater – superficially – to reform-minded voters in Iran, while improving Iran’s prospects in international negotiations.
The top Israeli advocate for letting the terrorists out of jail is none other than Shimon Peres.
The “Community Democracy” model meets all the criteria of the liberal democratic outlook, but it is based on the Jewish heritage and the Torah.
Rowhani will have little power.
“The Lord conferred statehood upon His people so that they might defend the enforcement of justice and preserve the truth contained in our Law as handed down by transmission.”
The unauthorized release last week of the text of a four-page order issued by a federal judge sitting on the special FISA national security court has unleashed a torrent of controversy over possible governmental overreaching.
We take it as a sure sign of the times that the recent stunning news that the Claims Conference had negotiated a four-year $1 billion infusion of funds from the German government to aid Holocaust survivors has been largely overshadowed by criticism that those leading the conference mishandled an internal investigation into the embezzlement of $57 million by some employees over a fifteen-year period.
Last week we lauded the efforts of several Jewish organizations to ameliorate the plight of the victims of the recent massive Oklahoma tornado and the extraordinary gesture the owner of Agri Star Meat & Poultry of Postville, Iowa, made in donating ten tons of meat for distribution.
We have no doubt that there is some measure of political partisanship in the controversies swirling around the Obama administration. That is, after all, the American way of governance and, frankly, how wrongdoing is often identified and uncovered. But political maneuvering is just a sideshow that distracts from the questions that should concern us, each of which strikes at the heart of American self-government.
We proudly salute those Jewish organizations that have rallied in support of the victims of last week’s devastating tornado that destroyed a large swath of the Oklahoma City region. As we reported last week, though there are relatively few Jews who live in the area, Jewish groups are providing an array of assistance.
President Obama’s speech on counterterrorism last Thursday at the National Defense University was one of the more impressive he has delivered while in the White House. Indeed, in discussing a reevaluation of how to fight what we all have come to refer to as “the war on terror,” he eloquently identified some profound issues.
Reports that the Obama administration targeted the records of reporters in an effort to determine who in government leaked secret information about a Yemeni bomb plot and a CIA report on North Korea would almost be amusing if the implications weren’t so troubling. Leaking information seems to be a forte of his administration – mainly, it seems, when the image of the president is thereby enhanced.
In an editorial last week (“Circling the Wagons”) we noted the efforts by the administration and its supporters to dismiss allegations that the government’s spin on the Benghazi attack was designed to shield the president and that the IRS was improperly used to stifle opposition to Mr. Obama’s reelection.
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