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July 1, 2015 / 14 Tammuz, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Barack Obama’

Trump Ranks No. 2 GOP Candidate in Nationwide Poll

Wednesday, July 1st, 2015

Donald Trump now is in the number two spot, shared with Ben Carson, in Iowa and Michigan after a survey that already placed him in the second spot in New Hampshire, according to a CNN poll.

The social mood in the United States, as well as most of the world, demands a change, not just from President Barack Obama but from the “establishment” politicians who are viewed by rank and file voters, rightly or wrongly, lackeys for corporate boardrooms and Wall Street.

There are too many people who want “anyone but Trump” for him to be president, but he just keeps on trucking.

The primary elections won’t be held until early next year, but Trump is enjoying solid support from a growing minority. Working against him is the strong dislike of the maverick billionaire by almost half of those polled.

A Quinnipiac University poll released Wednesday gives Trump 10% support in Iowa, eight points behind Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and tied with Dr. Ben Carson, another candidate with no political experience. They have left behind better-known names and experienced politicians, some of them like Ted Cruz and Mike Huckabee who are perfect for the conservative state of Iowa. Right behind Carson and Trump are Senators Rand Paul and Ted Cruz, followed by Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio.

Before Trump announced his candidacy, he won only 4% support, according to a poll carried out for Des Moines Register/Bloomberg.

In Michigan, Trump is tied with Carson and also with Bush, with Walker in first place.

Dean Debnam of Public Policy Polling, said in a statement:

Donald Trump’s in the top tier of the Republican field for a second consecutive week in our polling, Time will tell how long the Trump Bump lasts, but it’s at least two weeks at this point.

There are at least 16 Republicans running for the nomination for president, and that makes Trump all the more distinguishable from the others.

The JewishPress.com two weeks ago drew a parallel here between Trump and former Alabama Gov. George Wallace. Like Wallace, Trump does not care what anyone thinks about him or his opinions. He says what he thinks, and you can take it or leave it. Like Wallace, Trump is a magnet for people who resent ObamaCare, resent a dismal American foreign policy, especially in the Middle East, and are fed up with politicians whose popularity is based on how many promises can be made, fulfilled or not.

For them, this is what they want to hear about the biggest domestic issue today:

It’s people—our fine American people, living their own lives, buying their own homes, educating their children, running their own farms, working the way they like to work, and not having the bureaucrats and intellectual morons trying to manage everything for them. It’s a matter of trusting the people to make their own decisions.

It sounds like Trump, but it was out of the mouth of Wallace in the 1968 campaign, when his third-party candidacy attracted 10 million voters and 45 electoral votes.

If Trump loses his bid for the GOP nomination, as expected, and if he decides to run as a third-party candidate, he could cause wreak havoc for both the Republican and Democratic parties.

The pollsters and politicians sneered and mocked Wallace, but his third-party candidacy threatened to throw the election to the House of Representatives, which is what happens if no candidate wins a majority of electoral votes.

For the time being, the media are having a field day covering Trump, as seen in this CNN video here.

Fears Grow of Assad Waging Last-Stand Deadly Chemical Attack

Monday, June 29th, 2015

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has produced new chemical weapons that U.S. intelligence officials he might use in a last-ditch effort to save his own neck, The Wall Street Journal reported.

The Islamic State (ISIS), Al Qaeda and rebel forces have taken over most of Syria.

President Barack Obama, with great fanfare, removed a threat last year to bomb Syria when an agreement was reached for Assad to allow international inspectors to remove his stockpile of chemical and biological weapons, forbidden under the Geneva Convention.

It is questionable whether Assad disclosed his entire stockpile, and all it takes is one warehouse of chemical weapons to unleash a nightmare.

Hamish de Bretton-Gordon, a former commanding officer of the British army’s chemical-weapons unit, told the Journal:

Even if the regime had only one ton of VX left, that would be enough to kill thousands of people.

Trusting Assad is likely trusting Iran to come clean on its nuclear program.

And even if inspectors did find all of Assad’s weapons, nothing prevented him from producing new chemicals, which is exactly what he apparently has done.

Instead of sarin gas, which Assad used in 2013 in attacks that killed more than 1,400 people, he has developed a new chemical bomb using chlorine, according to the Journal, which added that U.S. official suspect that Assad may have hidden some of his chemical weapon stockpile last year.

That should not be surprising to anyone except the same American officials who really think that Iran will live up to an agreement just as Assad did not.

The American intelligence information on Assad’s chemical weapons is “being taken very seriously because he’s getting desperate,” according to officials quoted by the Journal.

The Assad regime, of course, denies it has any chemical weapons.”Experts have been saying for more than three years that Assad won’t last another six months.

Eventually, they will be correct.

Kerry Might Celebrate 4th of July by Talking with Iran on Deal

Sunday, June 28th, 2015

A senior U.S. official said Sunday it is prepared to extend talks with Iran beyond the June 30 deadline, which is a surprise to no one.

This is why The JewishPress.com has been laying low on the negotiations between the P5+1 and the Islamic Republic.
It was clear as the nose on U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s face that “deadline” in the Persian language means “maybe tomorrow.”

Talks have been going on for three years, and the “final” deadline of last November has been extended, as was every other deadline before and after.

President Barack Obama knows that Iran is playing games. Iran knows that Obama knows, and Obama knows that Iran knows… and so on and so forth.

The problem is that the game is over a nuclear weapon, which under Iran’s definition of peaceful purposes would be used as a threat to annihilate Israel and rid the world of Zionism, which is responsible for horrors such as the mobile phone, instant messaging, WAZE, drugs against Muscular Sclerosis, USB, Rummikub, the model for desalination, solar energy, drones, computer chips, breast tumor imaging and Natalie Portman.

We will back with more news around July 2 or maybe the 4th of July, when Iran can force Kerry to celebrate American Independence Day by sweating over a bad deal.

As for now, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif is playing out the script and returning to Tehran tonight. He will back on Monday for the next act.

European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini made one of the most unimportant comments of the year, stating that a final deal can be achieved if both show “strong political will.”

She added, “We stick to the foreseen timetable. If a few days more are needed, we can take them.”

Some say “a few is eight,” and even more. That would push talks dangerously close to mid-July and might muck up President Barack Obama’s rumored invitation to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu at that time.

If the invitation is valid, it would set the stage for President Obama to snicker at Prime Minister Netanyahu over a deal that Israel would rather go the way of the Titanic, or brag how he backs Israel so much that he did not agree to a lousy deals that he knows Congress won’t approve.

Five Former Advisers to Obama Publish Warning on Iran Deal

Thursday, June 25th, 2015

The proposed deal with Iran to supposedly prevent it from obtaining a nuclear weapon “falls short of meeting the administration’s own standard of a ‘good’ agreement,'” five of President Barack Obama’s former senior advisers said in a public letter.

They published their warning just before U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif are to meet in Vienna for negotiations to come up with a final agreement by next week, President Obama’s self-imposed deadline.

The ex-advisers are big time sluggers:

Dennis Ross, a semi reformed Oslo Accords architect;

David Petraeus, the former CIA director who once claimed that solving the Palestinian Authority Israel conflict was the key to all Middle East problems;

Robert Einhorn, a former member of the U.S negotiating team with Iran;

James Cartwright, a former vice-chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff; and

Gary Samore, a former Obama adviser on nuclear policy.

The letter, published in full below, states:

The agreement will not prevent Iran from having a nuclear weapons capability. It will not require the dismantling of Iran’s nuclear infrastructure.

It will however reduce that infrastructure for the next 10 to 15 years. And it will impose a transparency, inspection, and consequences regime with the goal of deterring and dissuading Iran from actually building a nuclear weapon.

The former advisers to President Obama urge him to reinstate a previous condition that Iran come clean on its previous research on nuclear weapons and allow international inspectors at military sites, which the regime in Tehran has repeated over and over the past two months it will not permit.

The letter, which is backed by a larger group that includes former Sen. Joe Lieberman, also calls on President Obama to take steps that would weaken Iran’s influence in the Middle East considering the huge economic boost Tehran would receive with the lifting of sanctions.

“Without these features, many of us will find it difficult to support a nuclear agreement with Iran,” the letter states.

A White House sources insisted that a “large part” of the letter is on the same page as the American “negotiating position inside the negotiating room.”

Maybe so and maybe not,, but what about the ‘small’ part?

Here is the entire letter, as posted on the website of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy: 

The Iran nuclear deal is not done. Negotiations continue. The target deadline is June 30.  We know much about the emerging agreement. Most of us would have preferred a stronger agreement.

The agreement will not prevent Iran from having a nuclear weapons capability. It will not require the dismantling of Iran’s nuclear enrichment infrastructure. It will however reduce that infrastructure for the next 10 to 15 years. And it will impose a transparency, inspection, and consequences regime with the goal of deterring and dissuading Iran from actually building a nuclear weapon.

The agreement does not purport to be a comprehensive strategy towards Iran. It does not address Iran’s support for terrorist organizations (like Hezbollah and Hamas), its interventions in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, and Yemen (its “regional hegemony”), its ballistic missile arsenal, or its oppression of its own people. The U.S. administration has prioritized negotiations to deal with the nuclear threat, and hopes that an agreement will positively influence Iranian policy in these other areas.

Even granting this policy approach, we fear that the current negotiations, unless concluded along the lines outlined in this paper and buttressed by a resolute regional strategy, may fall short of meeting the administration’s own standard of a “good” agreement.

We are united in our view that to maximize its potential for deterring and dissuading Iran from building a nuclear weapon, the emerging nuclear agreement must – in addition to its existing provisions – provide the following:

Monitoring and Verification: The inspectors of the International Atomic Energy Agency (the “IAEA”) charged with monitoring compliance with the agreement must have timely and effective access to any sites in Iran they need to visit in order to verify Iran’s compliance with the agreement. This must include military (including IRGC) and other sensitive facilities. Iran must not be able to deny or delay timely access to any site anywhere in the country that the inspectors need to visit in order to carry out their responsibilities.

Possible Military Dimensions: The IAEA inspectors must be able, in a timely and effective manner, to take samples, to interview scientists and government officials, to inspect sites, and to review and copy documents as required for their investigation of Iran’s past and any ongoing nuclear weaponization activities (“Possible Military Dimensions” or “PMD”). This work needs to be accomplished before any significant sanctions relief.

Advanced Centrifuges: The agreement must establish strict limits on advanced centrifuge R&D, testing, and deployment in the first ten years, and preclude the rapid technical upgrade and expansion of Iran’s enrichment capacity after the initial ten-year period. The goal is to push back Iran’s deployment of advanced centrifuges as long as possible, and ensure that any such deployment occurs at a measured, incremental pace consonant with a peaceful nuclear program.

Sanctions Relief: Relief must be based on Iran’s performance of its obligations. Suspension or lifting of the most significant sanctions must not occur until the IAEA confirms that Iran has taken the key steps required to come into compliance with the agreement. Non-nuclear sanctions (such as for terrorism) must remain in effect and be vigorously enforced.

Consequences of Violations: The agreement must include a timely and effective mechanism to re-impose sanctions automatically if Iran is found to be in violation of the agreement, including by denying or delaying IAEA access. In addition, the United States must itself articulate the serious consequences Iran will face in that event.

Most importantly, it is vital for the United States to affirm that it is U.S. policy to prevent Iran from producing sufficient fissile material for a nuclear weapon – or otherwise acquiring or building one – both during the agreement and after it expires. Precisely because Iran will be left as a nuclear threshold state (and has clearly preserved the option of becoming a nuclear weapon state), the United States must go on record now that it is committed to using all means necessary, including military force, to prevent this.

The President should declare this to be U.S. policy and Congress should formally endorse it. In addition, Congressional review of any agreement should precede any formal action on the agreement in the United Nations.

Without these features, many of us will find it difficult to support a nuclear agreement with Iran.

We urge the U.S. administration not to treat June 30 as an “inviolable” deadline. Stay at the negotiating table until a “good” agreement that includes these features is reached. Extend the existing Joint Plan of Action while negotiations continue.

This will freeze Iran’s nuclear activity and international sanctions at current levels. While the United States should extend the Iran Sanctions Act so it does not expire, it should not increase sanctions while negotiations continue. U.S. alternatives to an agreement are unappealing, but Iran’s are worse. It has every incentive to reach an agreement and obtain relief from sanctions and international isolation well in advance of its elections next February. If anyone is to walk out of the negotiations, let it be Iran.

Some argue that any nuclear agreement now simply further empowers bad Iranian behavior. And there is a lot to this argument. This is why we believe that the United States must bolster any agreement by doing more in the region to check Iran and support our traditional friends and allies.

This does not mean major U.S. ground combat operations in the Middle East. But it does mean taking initiatives like the following:

In Iraq: Expand training and arming not only of Iraqi Security Forces but also Kurdish Peshmerga in the north and vetted Sunni forces in the West. Allow U.S. Special Forces to leave their bases and help coordinate air strikes and stiffen Iraqi units. Sideline Iranian-backed militia and separate them from Shiite units (“popular mobilization units”) that are not under Iranian control.

In Syria: Expand and accelerate the U.S. train and equip programs. Work with Turkey to create a safe haven in northern Syria where refugees can obtain humanitarian aid and vetted non-extremist opposition fighters can be trained and equipped. Capitalize on Bashar al-Assad’s increasing weakness to split off regime elements and seek to join them with U.S. trained opposition elements. Interdict the transshipment of Iranian weapons into Syria in coordination with the Kurds and Turkey, and consider designating as terrorist organizations Iranian-backed Shiite militias responsible for egregious atrocities.

In Yemen: Expand support for Saudi Arabia and the UAE in pressuring the warring parties to the negotiating table while seeking to split the Houthi elements away from Iran.

Regionally: Interdict Iranian arms bound for extremist groups and continue to counter its efforts to harass commercial shipping and our naval forces. Reaffirm U.S. policy to oppose Iran’s efforts to subvert local governments and project its power at the expense of our friends and allies.

Collectively, these steps also strengthen U.S. capability against Daesh (the misnamed “Islamic State”). Acting against both Iranian hegemony and Daesh’s caliphate will help reassure friends and allies of America’s continued commitment. And it will help address Israel’s legitimate concerns that a nuclear agreement will validate Iran’s nuclear program, further facilitate its destabilizing behavior, and encourage further proliferation at a time when Israel faces the possible erosion of its “qualitative military edge.”

We urge the U.S. administration to create a discreet, high-level mechanism with the Israeli government to identify and implement responses to each of these concerns.

Taking the actions we propose while the nuclear negotiations continue will reinforce the message that Iran must comply with any agreement and will not be allowed to pursue a nuclear weapon. This will increase, not decrease, the chance that Iran will comply with the agreement and may ultimately adopt a more constructive role in the region. For the U.S. administration’s hopes in this respect have little chance so long as Iran’s current policy seems to be succeeding in expanding its influence.

‘Press Freedom’ Shows US-Backed Egyptian Regime is ‘Mubarak Number 3′

Thursday, June 25th, 2015

A New York-based group of journalists say there is an “unprecedented threat” to journalists in Egypt, where Obama backs the current regime.

The threat to journalists under Egypt’s regime of President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi is “unprecedented,” the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), warned Thursday.

President Barack Obama has backed the Al-Sisi regime after backing, and then turning his back, on Hosni Mubarak and then Mohammed Morsi of the terrorist Muslim Brotherhood party.

In a report filed by The Associated Press, the committee of journalists said that Egypt has imprisoned 18 news reporters , mostly for accusations that they are affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood.

“CPJ spoke to high-level officials, including the prosecutor-general and the minister of transitional justice, who denied that Egypt was holding any journalists in jail in relation to their work,” the group said. “But CPJ research shows that the government of el-Sisi … has used the pretext of national security to crack down on human rights, including press freedom.

One case cited is that of Mahmoud Abou-Zeid, arrested in August 2013 while taking photographs of the violent dispersal of a pro-Morsi protest where Al-Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi ‘s police and army killed hundreds of demonstrators.

The journalist still is in prison, but no charges have been filed.

Minister’s Wife Posts Stupid, Racist Obama Tweet

Monday, June 22nd, 2015

Hey, didja hear the one about the politician’s wealthy wife who put her keyboard in her mouth and had to have it yanked out real fast?

No?

Well, a whole bunch of others apparently have.

Israel Interior Minister Silvan Shalom found himself scrambling on Monday to clean up after a horrific diplomatic gaffe by his wife, heiress to the mammoth Hebrew-language newspaper Yediot Aharanot, via Twitter.

OBAMA RACIST JOKE ON TWITTER

Judy Nir-Mozes Shalom, had the social media crowd all a-Twitter on Sunday after tweeting a stupid racist joke that she posted in very poor taste.

“Do u know what Obama Coffee is? Black and weak,” she wrote.

The fallout was swift and merciless, with accusations that Shalom’s wife was “racist” and had caused “grievous damage” to Israel’s foreign relations. Which although it likely did, it probably just added to the poor foreign relations the state already has with Obama.

An apology tweeted by Shalom – who shrugged off the faux pas by calling the post “a stupid joke somebody told me” did little to clear the air. Nothing, even.

This behavior between the two governments is not new. Nasty slurs have been slung at Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu by staff in the Obama administration as well.

But it does no good and causes a great deal of harm when an Israeli government official – or a close family member of that individual – lowers him or herself to firing demeaning pettiness at others.

This is stupidity Israel can ill afford at any time, and certainly not right now, with U.S. presidential elections just over the horizon. Ultimately, what goes around, comes around.

ADL’s Foxman Slams Amb. Oren for ‘Insensitivity’ to Barack Obama

Monday, June 22nd, 2015

And the fallout continues from former Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Michael Oren’s comments about and analysis of U.S. President Barack Obama.

In a furious press release issued during the waning minutes of his reign, national director of the Anti-Defamation League Abe Foxman slammed Oren for expressing his views about U.S. President Barack Obama.

In the ADL press release Foxman singles out Oren’s essay in Foreign Policy Magazine, and does not mention the better known Wall Street Journal op-ed or even his forthcoming book.

You see, in Foreign Policy, Oren explains, in great detail, what he saw as Obama’s dramatic change with his predecessors regarding the players in the Middle East. As Oren plainly states it, one had only to look very carefully – and keep referring back – to President Obama’s speech in Cairo in July, 2009. The Cairo speech was Obama’s first major foreign policy address. And Oren studied it, and referred others to it, often. The White House itself referred to the speech as “President Obama Speaks to the Muslim World,” according to Oren.

The Foreign Policy essay is an important one in many ways, yet Foxman’s criticism is hard to square with what Oren actually wrote.

For Foxman and the ADL claim that Oren “revived the meme of the president’s ‘Muslim Heritage’ to make the case that American foreign policy in the Middle East is primarily being promoted and dictated by the president’s early upbringing in the Muslim faith and in Muslim traditions.”

But Foxman had to sift through an 18 paragraph essay and focus on only one paragraph, close to the end, as the source of his criticism. In that one – the 13th paragraph – Oren mentions Obama’s Muslim father and step-father and his upbringing in largely Islamic Indonesia, and of Obama’s reminiscences of idyllic Kenyan villages. Oren draws on Obama’s own autobiography, Dreams From My Father, as the basis for his speculation.

This is the one paragraph, that drew the ire of Foxman:

In addition to its academic and international affairs origins, Obama’s attitudes toward Islam clearly stem from his personal interactions with Muslims. These were described in depth in his candid memoir, Dreams from My Father, published 13 years before his election as president. Obama wrote passionately of the Kenyan villages where, after many years of dislocation, he felt most at home and of his childhood experiences in Indonesia. I could imagine how a child raised by a Christian mother might see himself as a natural bridge between her two Muslim husbands. I could also speculate how that child’s abandonment by those men could lead him, many years later, to seek acceptance by their co-religionists.

But by the 13th paragraph, Oren had already mentioned Obama’s worldview being developed at the academic institutions he attended, and in particular by the enormous influence Columbia University’s Professor Edward Said’s book Orientalism had on Obama’s generation of university students and professors.

Oren’s article is titled, “How Obama Opened His Heart to the Muslim World,” and the subheadline reads: “And got it stomped on. Israel’s former ambassador to the United States on the president’s naiveté as peacemaker, blinders to terrorism, and alienation of allies.” This is what the essay is about. It is not an effort at armchair psychoanalysis. Nor is it, as Foxman suggests, an effort to explain Obama’s orientation towards the Muslim world as due to his yearning for a Muslim father who dropped out of his life.

After recognizing that it is appropriate to criticize the policies of this administration, Foxman wrote:

Ambassador Oren’s essay, however, veers into the realm of conspiracy theories, and with an element of amateur psychoanalysis he links U.S. policies in the Middle East to the president’s personal history of having a Muslim father. Then, taking it a step further by suggesting this “worldview” of Muslims and Islam has driven the president to embrace the Muslim world at the expense of both Israel and U.S. national security interests. This results in borderline stereotyping and insensitivity.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/adls-foxman-slams-amb-oren-for-insensitivity-to-barack-obama/2015/06/22/

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