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April 20, 2014 / 20 Nisan, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘CNN’

So What Did Obama Call the Benghazi Attack?

Thursday, October 18th, 2012

Since the debate there’s been a lot of analysis as to whether the President designated the attack on the U.S. embassy in Bengahzi, Libya, an act of terrorism.

Throughout most of his speech on September 12th, Obama did call it an “attack” and then later in the speech after discussing the attacks of September 11th, 2001, he said:

Of course, yesterday was already a painful day for our nation as we marked the solemn memory of the 9/11 attacks. We mourned…. As Americans, let us never, ever forget that our freedom is only sustained because there are people who are willing to fight for it…  No acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation, alter that character, or eclipse the light of the values that we stand for.

So it wasn’t clear that he was referring to the Benghazi attack as a terror attack or whether he was speaking about the 9-11 attacks or both. The New York Times reported this morning that on Sept. 13th, at a campaign speech, Obama had said:

And we want to send a message all around the world — anybody who would do us harm: No act of terror will dim the light of the values that we proudly shine on the rest of the world….

As they didn’t give the context of the statement, we are left to trust them that he was talking about Benghazi.

Then for about a week, administration officials described the attacks as part of a protest-riot against the the U.S. over the “Innocence of Muslims” video which got out of hand. As Romney attempted to point out during the debate, U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice called it “a spontaneous, not premeditated attack response” which was attended by “some individual clusters of extremists who came with heavier weapons.” (Here’s a link to a catalogue of quotes from the administration about the attack from the Times).

CNN points out that when he was on “the View,” Obama was asked about how Hillary Clinton had called the attack an act of “terrorism” and whether that was the case. Obama responded saying, “we’re still doing an investigation….”

This looks like a case of semantics overshadowing the main point. Obama did not believe the attack was an act of terrorism. He and his administration’s initial reaction was to play down its significance of the attack. Remember, this is a President who banned the use of the term “War on Terror” in his administration. That’s the point Romney is making and that’s what the discussion should be about.

***

Here’s a good explanation of what the President was referring to when he said “act of terror” in the Rose Garden:

And here’s the debate’s moderator Candy Crowly explaining what she said:

CNN No Longer Available in Israel

Thursday, September 20th, 2012

Satellite broadcaster YES announced Wednesday that CNN broadcasts will no longer be available after December 31.

Yes issued a statement saying that it would investigate a replacement for the 20-year staple of Israeli news buffs, but that customers could avail themselves of other English-language news broadcasts, including Fox News, BBC World, Sky News, and Bloomberg.

HOT cable dropped CNN last year, replacing it with MSNBC.

‘Innocence’ Actress Says the Cast Was Duped, Muhammad’s Character Was Named ‘George’ (Video)

Thursday, September 13th, 2012

The 80 cast and crew members employed by the makers of the movie that has provoked the Islamic world said told CNN on Wednesday that they were “grossly misled” about the film’s intent and expressed regrets over the violence the movie has been causing.

“The entire cast and crew are extremely upset and feel taken advantage of by the producer,” they said in a statement to CNN about the movie, “Innocence of Muslims.”

“We are 100% not behind this film and were grossly misled about its intent and purpose,” continued the statement to CNN. “We are shocked by the drastic rewrites of the script and lies that were told to all involved. We are deeply saddened by the tragedies that have occurred.”

Four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens, were killed Tuesday in Benghazi, Libya by a terrorist team taking advantage of the local outrage over the film, which ridicules the prophet Muhammad.

A casting call published in July 2011 in Backstage magazine and in other publications listed the movie title as “Desert Warrior,” and presented it as an “historical Arabian Desert adventure film.”

An actress in the film who asked not to be identified said the original script did not include a character named Prophet Muhammad.

The actress said she spoke on Wednesday with the producer, who is identified in the advertisement as Sam Bassiel. “He said he wrote the script because he wants the Muslims to quit killing,” she said. “I had no idea he was doing all this.”

The AP has since verified the man’s identity as Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, age 55, a Coptic Christian.

“I would never be involved in a film to ever hurt or bring harm to anybody,” the bactress told CNN. “This makes me sick to my stomach to think that I was involved in that movie that brought death to somebody else.”

According to the actress, the character of Muhammad was named George during the shooting.

A member of the production staff who worked directly on the film and has a copy of the original script told CNN it does not mention Muhammad or Islam.

The Wall Street Journal identified the filmmaker as Sam Bacile, an Israeli-American real estate developer. The Journal reported that, in its telephone interview with Bacile, he characterized his film as “a political effort to call attention to the hypocrisies of Islam.”

“Islam is a cancer,” he told the newspaper. “The movie is a political movie. It’s not a religious movie.”

“This guy is totally anonymous. At this point no one can confirm he holds an Israeli citizenship and even if he did we are not involved,” ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor said. “No Israeli institution, government department or office has any involvement in this. This guy acted on his own behalf.”

Consultant Steve Klein told CNN he worked with Bacile on the movie and said the filmmaker had gone into hiding.

James Horn, a friend who has worked with Mr. Klein in anti-Muslim activities for several years, told the NY Times that he believed Mr. Klein was involved in providing technical assistance to the film and advice on the script. Mr. Horn said he called Mr. Klein on Wednesday. “I said, ‘Steve, did you do this?’ He said, ‘Yep.’ ”

“He’s very depressed, and he’s upset,” Klein told CNN on Wednesday regarding Nakoula Basseley Nakoula. “I talked to him this morning, and he said that he was very concerned for what happened to the ambassador.”

Klein said it was not the film’s fault that protests had turned bloody.

An online trailer for the film depicts Muslims very much the way Nazi propaganda movies depicted Jews and their plot to “conquer the world.”

Muhammad is shown as a womanizer, child molester and bloodied killer.

The movie, which was posted in July on YouTube, got more notice after Egyptian television aired segments and anti-Islam activists, including Egyptian-born Coptic Christian Morris Sadek, promoted it online.

Florida Qoran burning pastor Terry Jones said he had been contacted to help distribute the film.

“The film is not intended to insult the Muslim community, but it is intended to reveal truths about Muhammad that are possibly not widely known,” Jones told CNN.

“It is very clear that God did not influence him (Muhammad) in the writings of the Qoran,” said Jones, who blames Muslims’ thin skins, rather than the film, for the riots and murders.

Atheists Target Religious Jews in Williamsburg

Sunday, March 4th, 2012

A national organization calling itself American Atheists is planning to unveil its anti-religious billboards Monday in heavily Muslim Paterson, NJ and in heavily Jewish Williamsburg, Brooklyn, according to CNN.

“You know it’s a myth … and you have a choice,” the billboards declare, in Patterson in English and Arabic, and in Brooklyn in English and Hebrew. Next to the text on the Arabic billboard is the word Allah, and on the Hebrew sign is the Hebrew word for the Tetragrammaton, which Jews are not permitted to pronounce.

Including the “Shem ham’forash” in the Hebrew billboard is particularly provocative, since it is sacred and so may not be erased in print, presenting protesters with a dilemma.

According to Dave Silverman, president of American Atheists, the motive behind the signs is purely humanitarian, as they are intended to reach atheists in the Muslim and Jewish communities who may feel isolated because they are surrounded by believers.

“Those communities are designed to keep atheists in the ranks,” he says. “If there are atheists in those communities, we are reaching out to them. We are letting them know that we see them, we acknowledge them and they don’t have to live that way if they don’t want to.”

The effort to discourage faith in these two devoted, monotheistic communities, receives a special meaning because it is being launched on the week of Purim, a celebration of the Jewish victory over Amalek. In Jewish sources, the function of Amalek in Jewish history is to encourage doubt in the heart of faithful Jews.

The late Christopher Hitchens depicted well the despair that has been driving atheist activists in the face of threats to their lack of faith (Atheists and agnostics make up only between 3% and 4% of the U.S. population): “Our theocratic enemy is in plain view. Protean in form, it extends from the overt menace of nuclear-armed mullahs to the insidious campaigns to have stultifying pseudo-science taught in American schools.”

But while Christian and, to a lesser extent, Muslims have been entangled in a conflict over the separation of Church and State in America, Jewish institutions have largely been staying out of those battles, and the Hasidic Jews of Williamsburg have certainly not been involved in pushing a national agenda of any kind. Posting an intrusive and insulting billboard in the midst of their neighborhood is nothing short of an unprovoked attack.

And knowing the mettle of the Hasidim of Williamsburg, they are sure to come up with a proper response.

Silverman told CNN the signs advertise the American Atheists’ upcoming convention and an atheist rally, called the Reason Rally, in Washington next month.

Klein: Funding Occupy

Wednesday, December 14th, 2011

Veteran Radicals Head Occupy Movement

The so-called leaderless Occupy movement is in fact operating what appears to be a nerve center staffed by professional agitators deeply tied to groups funded by billionaire activist George Soros. The groups, most prominent among them being the Tides Center, have been involved with Occupy since the anti-Wall Street movement’s inception.

The radical connections have been largely missed by the general public. CNN, the only news media outlet to receive exclusive access to Occupy’s alleged headquarters, did not fully identify the activists found running it.

Last week, CNN ran a piece titled “Exclusive: Inside the offices of Occupy Wall Street.” In the piece, CNN quoted activist Han Shan, identifying him only as “a member of Occupy Wall Street’s press relations and direct-action working groups.”

“This is just an office space that a handful of people have tried to make a resource for the Occupy Wall Street movement,” Shan stated. Shan’s radical resume goes far beyond Occupy. He is the former program director for the Tides Center-funded Ruckus Society and an activist with the Tides-funded Adbusters.

Shan was also listed as the contact person for protests outside the 2000 Democratic National Convention. Those protests were sponsored by both Adbusters and Ruckus.

Adbusters magazine is reported to have come up with the Occupy Wall Street idea after Arab Spring protests toppled governments in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia. The Adbusters website serves as a central hub for Occupy’s planning.

Working with the Ruckus Society, Shan was a leader of the 1999 World Trade Organization protests in Seattle that turned violent. Ruckus helped to spark those riots.

Ruckus is directly tied to Occupy. This column previously reported that official direct-action training resources for recent Occupy events include several manuals from the Ruckus Society, which trains radical activists in “direct action” techniques. Ruckus was also listed as a “friend and partner” of the Occupy Days of Action held last month.

Ruckus is funded by the Tides Center, which has been involved in Occupy since the movement’s onset. Another grantee of Tides is the Adbusters magazine. MoveOn.org, which has joined Occupy, is funded by Tides.

Tides functions as a money tunnel where major leftist donors provide large sums that are channeled to hundreds of radical groups. One prominent Tides donor is Soros.

Besides accepting major donations from Tides, Ruckus is also funded directly by Soros’s own Open Society Institute.

Meanwhile, another Occupy staffer loosely identified by CNN is Haywood Carey, who is labeled simply as an Occupy “activist.” Carey, however, was a paid employee of the Change to Win labor federation from 2008 to 2009. The federation is a coalition of four member unions: The International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Service Employees International Union; United Farm Workers and the United Food and Commercial Workers.

In his book Beyond the Fields, labor historian Randy Shaw notes that the groundwork for the founding of Change to Win were laid out by SEIU activist Stephen Lerner. As this journalist was first to report, the tactic of blocking bridges, already used by Occupy Wall Street to hold up the Brooklyn Bridge, was institutionalized by Lerner.

Meanwhile, another professional radical running Occupy not yet fully identified by the news media is Beth Bogart, who has been widely quoted as helping run the movement’s press relations department in New York and other cities.

Not mentioned in most media accounts is that Bogart, formerly known as Beth Bogart Fenton, is co-founder of Fenton Communications. Fenton is an extremist-led outfit that crafts the public relations strategy of Tides grantees. It came under new scrutiny after this reporter published a series of exposés tying it to Occupy Wall Street.

Fenton Communications has been behind the public relations strategy of a who’s who of far-left causes, organizations and activists, from representing Soros himself to Health Care for America Now to crafting strategies for MoveOn.org and a litany of anti-war groups.

NBC Pairs With Controversial Group

NBC-owned television stations in cities across the nation just teamed up with a nonprofit “journalism” group funded by a billionaire husband-and-wife team who not only spent millions campaigning for President Obama but also topped donor lists for groups such as ACORN and MoveOn.org.

The nonprofit, ProPublica, will contribute to the news operations of all NBC owned and operated stations, including those in such cities as Los Angeles, Chicago and Philadelphia, the network announced Monday.

The NBC affiliates will get early access to investigative reports from ProPublica, which describes itself as an “independent, non-profit newsroom that produces investigative journalism in the public interest.”

Also included in the arrangement are local radio stations owned by Comcast, which purchased NBC Universal earlier this year. On its website, ProPublica describes itself as championing the values of the “weak” against the “strong.”

Controversial Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr., a friend of Obama who was embroiled in a national race scandal in 2009, sits on the board of ProPublica.

Barak to CNN: One year to stop Iran

Saturday, November 19th, 2011

In an interview that will be aired tomorrow. Defense Minister Ehud Barak told CNN, “In another year there will be no way to stop Iran from having nuclear weapons”.

The Desert of Death

Wednesday, November 16th, 2011

Due to my appearances in the Arabic media, from time to time I receive email messages from Arabs or Muslims who are not Arabs, with information that may interest me, in their opinion. Some of these are requests for me to get involved in a specific matter, either personal or public. I answer them all, and I keep contact with some of them. I have gotten more than a few insights about the Arab and Muslim world from these people, who reveal to me the most sensitive, hidden, secret, inscrutable aspects of the societies that surround us. There are also a few women among them, who send me their hair-raising stories about their lives and their familial and social settings into which they were born and in which they must live.

This week it was a man from Eritrea who lives in Europe, a Muslim refugee from the hell-on-Earth which is the African Horn, who now lives in tranquility and safety. He sent me an email message that shocked me, and I would like to share this with my readers.

Everyone knows that Israel has served for years as a haven for refugee workers from Eritrea, Sudan and other African countries. A few of the infiltrators into Israel came from the embattled areas of Darfur, and until now Israel has absorbed about forty thousand African infiltrators under this category, who have no connection with Darfur. They come to Israel to find work and a normal life, because of the unemployment, the corruption and poverty in their homelands.

The infiltrators arrive to Israel by way of Egypt and the Sinai Desert, and it’s Bedouin of Sinai who bring them to the border between Israel and Egypt. These smugglers get thousands of dollars per person in exchange for this service, an astronomical sum for those destitute and desperate Africans. Some of them, who cannot pay the smuggler’s fee, remain as prisoners of the Bedouin, and are tortured and humiliated until their families send the required sum. The lot of the women is even worse, because they often fall victim to the sexual passions of the Bedouins who rape them. In many cases the Egyptian soldiers who are stationed at the border shoot Africans who try to infiltrate into Israel, apparently because they cannot pay the Egyptian soldier the “passage money”, that he demands from them, since the Bedouin have robbed the little that was in their pockets.

The bitter reality of Sinai has caused thousands of Eritreans to disappeared into the expanses of this desert. Recently, the reason for these “disappearances” has become known. Some of them are killed because they could not pay the Bedouins the great sums that were demanded, and some were murdered in order to “harvest” organs: kidneys, corneas, hearts and even livers. A few honorable and creditable media outlets – CNN, BBC – reported on this phenomenon including photographs of bodies of Africans who were discarded in the desert after internal organs and eyes were removed from them.

CNN reported that Egyptian doctors from Cairo and Ismailiya are implicated in the removal of organs: they were found to be in contact with the bedouin tribes, specifically Sawarka and Tiaha. They come to the tribal area in which Eritreans are held, with vehicles equipped with a refrigerator, choose among the Eritreans those who look healthy and strong, put them to sleep, remove from them the required organs and their bodies are discarded as food for the birds of prey and carrion eaters. In exchange for this, the doctors pay the Bedouins great sums of cash.

An Egyptian television station brought Bedouin witnesses who said that sometimes the doctor doesn’t even bother to put the victim to sleep for the “operation”. One body that was photographed showed evidence of asphyxiation by a rope – probably because “anesthetization” by asphyxiation is less expensive than anesthetization by administering an anesthetic drug. One of the witnesses said that in some of the cases, blood was taken from the Africans, to be used for blood transfusions.

Bachmann’s Pro-Israel Stance Shaped By Summer Work On Kibbutz

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011


WASHINGTON – Newly declared presidential candidate Michele Bachmann’s dedication to Israel dates back to 1974, when she was selected at age 17 to join a group of Minnesota teens to spend a summer in Israel.


Working on Kibbutz Be’eri in the Negev left an impression.


“We were always accompanied by soldiers with machine guns,” she said a year ago in an interview with TCJewFolk, a clearinghouse for young Jewish bloggers in Minnesota. “While we were working, the soldiers were walking around looking for land mines.”


Bachmann’s performance in the first major GOP debate has vaulted her to the forefront of a crowded Republican field.


Her capacity for self-deprecation helped her ace the June 13 forum on CNN. Other candidates stalled or looked embarrassed when the moderator posed quirky “either-or” pop culture questions. Bachmann said she liked both Johnny Cash and Elvis Presley, then delivered a full-throated laugh at her own inability to decide.


“When Michele speaks one on one, there is nothing fake about her,” said Danny Rosen, a Minnesota lawyer who is a  longtime supporter of Bachmann. “You can sense that she is revealing the real Michele. That can be a disarming quality.”


It’s been a problem in the past for the congresswoman from eastern Minnesota. Bachmann acknowledges that her tendency to speak off the cuff can get her into trouble.


“People can make mistakes, and I wish I could be perfect every time I say something, but I can’t,” she told CNN this week.


She also displayed command of the issues, particularly those relating to her fiscal conservatism. Bachmann, trained as a lawyer, at the tip of her fingers had analyses that she used to attack President Obama’s economic policies, citing a study that she said showed an 800,000 job-loss figure as a result of health care reform.

 

 


Michele Bachmann

 

Many of her pro-Israel supporters said they were especially impressed by her command of Middle East issues, pointing in particular to a recent video on Israel posted by her campaign. The video showcases Bachmann’s understanding of how Israelis view their alliance with the United States as nuanced, emotive and consistent with her deep Christian beliefs.


“We even share the same exceptional mission, to be a light to the nations,” she says in the clip. “After all, the image of America as a shining city on the hill was taken from the book of Isaiah.”


The video, which is dedicated to Israel, also blasts Obama for what she says was the president’s call for Israel to “give up its right to defensible borders.”


Caroline Glick, the conservative Jerusalem Post columnist, called the Bachmann video the most cogent explanation of the U.S.-Israel relationship she had ever heard.


“And this speech came out of nowhere,” Glick said. “She’s not pandering for votes. No one asked her to say this. She just decided that she had to make a statement.”


Bachmann held a reception after the most recent American Israel Public Affairs Committee conference in May at the same time as receptions hosted by former U.S. House of Representatives speaker Newt Gingrich, who is also running for the GOP presidential nod, and Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.), the chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee.


Bachmann easily attracted the biggest crowd, and she cut short her remarks to accommodate a line of photo-seekers snaking outside the hall.


Bachmann, the wife of a psychological counselor who runs a Christian-themed practice, told the crowd that she and her family make sure each year to have at least one Jewish event, attending a Jewish-themed play or movie.


Her formal candidacy announcement also included a reference to Israel.


“We can’t afford four more years of a foreign policy that leads from behind and doesn’t stand up for our friends, like Israel, and too often fails to stand up to our enemies,” she said in Iowa.


Bachmann reached out to Jewish backers in 2005 as soon as she sought the seat in the 6th District when Rep. Mark Kennedy, the Republican incumbent, launched an ultimately unsuccessful Senate bid. She had served in the state Senate since 2001.


Her career, launched out of frustration with her local school board – she is the mother of five and has been a foster parent for 23 children – has flourished as speeches calling for a return to what she said were the founders’ intentions have drawn conservative interest.


While Bachmann’s district includes two small Jewish communities, her interest in Israel and in Jews stems more from her upbringing and her beliefs than anything else, her supporters say. She has made fast friends among conservative Jews, attending their lifecycle events and sharing Friday-night dinners.


Todd Gurstel, a lawyer who backs Bachmann, was with her in 2008 when she toured the tunnel beneath the Western Wall. Gurstel said he enjoyed watching Bachmann fence with his liberal in-laws when she attended his daughter’s bat mitzvah.


“The thing that makes Michele different than any other politician is that she sticks to her conviction despite however outrageous it may seem to others,” he said, noting that he disagrees with the candidate on her opposition to such issues such as gay rights and abortion.


Frank Hornstein, a Democratic state representative, said her postures on gay rights, abortion and slashing social services make her a bad fit for the Jewish community.


“She has been a leading voice in opposition to things that have been a high priority for the Jewish community over many, many years,” he said.


Hornstein noted that in her Israel video, Bachmann never referred to a “two-state solution” even though polling shows that is the peace process outcome most U.S. Jews favor.


“When you have a candidate taking more militant positions on the peace process than the Israeli government, it doesn’t serve Israel well,” he said.


(JTA)

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/bachmanns-pro-israel-stance-shaped-by-summer-work-on-kibbutz-2/2011/06/29/

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