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Quick Takes: News You May Have Missed

   The working assumption in the Israel Defense Forces is that allies of the Hizbullah terrorist organization started this week’s northern border clashes with Israel, resulting in the death of Lt. Col. Dov Harari. At least three Lebanese soldiers and a Lebanese journalist were also killed.
 
   Sources in the IDF told this column they fear Hizbullah may be trying to start tension with Israel to divert attention from a potentially damaging UN probe into the 2005 assassination of former Lebanese prime minister, Rafiq Hariri, for which Syria and Hizbullah have been widely blamed.
 
   Lebanese reports claim the conflict began when an IDF patrol attempted to uproot a tree on the Lebanese side of the border earlier today. Other reports said the Israeli soldiers were attempting to plant cameras in Lebanon.
 
   Since Israel’s 2006 war in Lebanon, the IDF has conducted routine patrols up to the international border, which in some places the Lebanese consider their side of the border fence although UNIFIL forces consider those enclaves to be part of Israel.
 
   IDF officials told this column Israeli soldiers coordinate their routine patrols with the international forces stationed at the border and that this week’s patrol was no different. Also, the officials said the IDF was performing necessary maintenance work on the Israeli side of the fence.
 
   Sources in the IDF said the clashes appear to have been a coordinated assault, especially in light of a Katyusha rocket they said was ready on a truck in Lebanon for firing as part of a seemingly staged provocation.
 
   The IDF sources said many of the Lebanese forces at the border, in particularly the Division 9 Lebanese Army border patrol, consist of Shiite Muslims. The sources believe that division is loyal to Hizbullah.
 
   Lebanon has been ablaze in recent weeks with reports that a UN probe into the Hariri assassination is set to blame some leaders of Hizbullah. Some reports have claimed the international body will hand out arrest warrants to Hizbullah leaders.
 

   Two weeks ago, Hizbullah chief Hassan Nasrallah said that he expected members of his party to be charged by the UN court probing the Hariri murder. He said the probe had pushed Lebanon into a “very sensitive phase.”

 

More Disturbing Obama Connections (I)

 

   President Obama’s assistant secretary of state for population, refugees and migration, Eric P. Schwartz, previously served as the director of a George Soros-funded organization that promoted global governance.
 
   Schwartz also coordinated meetings on behalf of Obama’s transition team with a group that advocates placing more blue United Nations helmets on U.S. troops and coercing the U.S. to join the UN’s International Criminal Court, which could prosecute American citizens and soldiers for “war crimes” and other offenses.
 
   Prior to his appointment to the State Department last year, Schwartz served as executive director of the U.S. Connect Fund, a Soros-funded and affiliated organization. The group promotes global governance.
 
   The Connect Fund provides grants to pro-UN groups such as the Center for Victims of Torture, which produced a draft executive order against torture endorsed by prominent national security figures. Months later, a virtually identical executive order was issued by Obama.
 
   Groups funded by Schwartz’s organization organized a January 2009 national conference call to promote a “Responsible U.S. Global Engagement” agenda for Obama’s new administration.
 
   Schwartz himself has authored numerous op-eds in major national newspapers calling for more U.S. global engagement.
 
   Schwartz previously worked under Bill Clinton’s national security adviser, Sandy Berger, in a position, he boasted on his Connect Fund website bio, that allowed him to initiate and manage “the White House review that resulted in U.S. signature of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court,” which would subject U.S. citizens to international prosecution for “war crimes.”
 
   Later, President Bush’s UN ambassador, John Bolton, led the effort for the U.S. to pull out of the International Criminal Court, a victory Bolton touted as the “happiest moment” of his political career until that point.
 
   Schwartz’s assistant at the Connect Fund, Heather B. Hamilton, who now serves as senior policy advocate at the fund, led the group’s efforts to lobby against Bush’s appointment of Bolton.
 

   While Schwartz was serving Obama’s transition team as adviser on UN issues, he coordinated several meetings with the Washington Working Group on the International Criminal Court, which wants the U.S. to re-enter that agreement.

 

More Disturbing Obama Connections (II)
 
   Among the individuals who were part of the controversial “JournoList” e-mail group were activists with ties to the White House and a socialist group closely linked for years to President Obama.
 
   Other members of JournoList were activists from a far-left think tank that has been partnered with ACORN and was founded with input from Obama.
 
   The group, Demos, may have been instrumental in securing the appointment of Obama’s former “green jobs” adviser, Van Jones, who resigned after reports surfaced that he had funded a communist organization.
 
   JournoList – a listserv comprised of several hundred liberal journalists and like-minded professors and activists – shut down last month amid reports members of the news media used the group to discuss minimizing negative publicity surrounding Obama’s radical ties.
 
   One JournoList member was Robert Kuttner, co-founder and co-editor of the American Prospect. Kuttner is also one of five founders of the George-Soros-funded Economic Policy Institute and a distinguished senior fellow of Demos.
 
   Demos originally recommended the Obama administration hire Van Jones, also a Demos personality.
 
   According to Demos’s own website, while Obama was a state senator in 1999, he served on the working group that founded Demos.
 
   Months before Obama hired Jones in March 2009, Chuck Collins, an associate of Soros and a longtime leftist activist linked to socialist causes, penned a piece for Demos recommending the White House hire Jones. Collins is director of the Tax Program for Shared Prosperity at Demos.
 
   Through a socialist party, Obama may be more closely linked to Collins.
 
   Official newspapers of the socialist-oriented New Party list Collins as among the party’s founding builders in its fall 1994 edition.
 
   This column previously reported on newspaper evidence showing Obama was a member of the New Party, which sought to elect members to public office with the aim of moving the Democratic Party far leftward, ultimately forming a new political party with a socialist agenda.
 
   Also, in an exclusive e-mail interview, Marxist activist Carl Davidson, a New Party founder, recounted to this reporter Obama’s participation with his New Party organization.
 
   Kuttner, meanwhile, is linked to a socialist group, the Democratic Socialists of America, with which Obama also has deep ties.
 
   Also, scores of known members of the JournoList group are members of, or linked to, the Democratic Socialists of America.
 
   Obama himself spoke at a forum organized by the group at the University of Chicago in early 1996 called “Employment and Survival in Urban America.”
 
   Quentin Young, considered the father of the U.S. single-payer movement, is a longtime Democratic Socialists of America activist. He has had a relationship with Obama, particularly in the 1990s, when he reportedly advised Obama on health care.
 
   Young was reportedly present at a 1995 meeting at the home of former Weather Underground terrorist William Ayers who was said to have launched Obama’s political career.
 
   Timuel Black, a member activist, mediated political disputes on behalf of Obama in the 1990s and was reportedly involved in Obama’s campaign committee during his successful 2004 Senate race.
 
   Longtime member activist Arnold Wolf was a member of “Rabbis for Obama” and has held fundraisers in his home for Obama, including a function in 1995 that was aimed at introducing Obama to the Hyde Park activist community.
 

   Eliseo Medina, international executive vice president of Service Employees International Union, has been honored by Democratic Socialists of America. During the most recent presidential campaign, Medina served on Obama’s National Latino Advisory Council.

 

   Aaron Klein is Jerusalem bureau chief and senior reporter for Internet giant WorldNetDaily.com. He is also host of an investigative radio program on New York’s 770-WABC Radio, the largest talk radio station in the U.S., every Sunday between 2-4 p.m.

About the Author: Aaron Klein is a New York Times bestselling author and senior reporter for WND.com. He is also host of an investigative radio program on New York's 970 AM Radio on Sundays from 7 to 9 p.m. Eastern. His website is KleinOnline.com.


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