According to the Mas Hachnasa (Israel Tax Authority) website, senior members of the IRS, met yesterday in Jerusalem with the Tax Authority director, Moshe Asher and other senior tax officials, to discuss strengthening cooperation between the authorities. The meeting placed an emphasis on the exchange of information between the two tax authorities and the authorities’ commitment to mutual assistance.
Posts Tagged ‘IRS’
Originally published at Rubin Reports.
Up to now the Obama Administration has faced three big scandals—the IRS, the bugging of AP and Fox, and Benghazi. And now here is scandal Number 4:
For the last four years the Obama Administration has conducted a major “outreach” program to Islamic groups in the United States and in the Middle East. Patrick Poole has been investigating this project and in a comprehensive article now presents the full scoop and scope of what’s been going on. His article, “Blind to Terror: The U.S. Government’s Disastrous Muslim Outreach Efforts and the Impact on U.S. Policy” in the new, Summer, issue of MERIA Journal is a gamechanger
You may think that you know about this subject but it goes far beyond what you have heard about. The majority of groups and individuals promoted by the Obama Administration have been radical Islamists, particularly Muslim Brotherhood cadre, and more than occasionally people involved in terrorist activity.
Moderate Muslims have been neglected and isolated by this project which has helped the radicals, Islamists, and pro-terrorists gain hegemony in the Muslim community in America.
Again, you may think that you know this story but it is far more extensive than has ever before been revealed. Often, the White House and FBI have granted access and worked with those who were simultaneously being investigated on serious charges of terrorism.
The whole “outreach” program has been a farce and it would be charitable to describe it as incompetent on the part of the Obama Administration. Patrick Poole pulls all of the material together for the first time and shows serious flaws that have endangered Americans in scores of cases.
Radicals have been given credentials as moderates, been provided with information that should have remained secret, been allowed to advise and influence U.S. policy. The kind of government mishandling of terrorist threats that characterize the Fort Hood case and the Boston bombing has been business as usual.
Here is a portion of Patrick Poole’s article:
“When President Obama hosted his annual Iftar dinner in August 2010 to commemorate the Muslim celebration of Ramadan, the list of invitees published by the White House was curiously missing the names of several attendees – all of whom were top leaders of organizations known to be purveyors of jihadist ideology and implicated by federal prosecutors in financing terrorism.[
“But it wasn’t like they had crashed the party. In fact, one of the individuals missing on the official White House list, Mohamed Majid, president of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), was pictured in a news service photograph sitting at the front table just a few feet from the president as he spoke When Majid was hailed by Time Magazine in November 2005 as a “moderate Muslim cleric” that was helping the FBI fight terrorists, he quickly published an open letter to his congregation on the mosque’s website assuring his congregants that he was doing no such thing stating that his relationship with the FBI was a one-way street only to communicate Muslim community concerns – not to report on individuals suspected of terrorist activity.
“It was just a few years ago the Attorney General of the United States was canceling Muslim outreach events for the sole reason that Majid would be present at the meeting, because the Department of Justice had just named ISNA as an unindicted co-conspirator in the largest terrorism financing trial in American history.
“But Majid’s connection to terrorism goes back even farther than that, since the offices of the mosque he leads, the All Dulles Area Muslim Society (ADAMS) Center, were raided by U.S. Customs authorities in March 2002 in a wide-sweeping terror finance investigation. In an affidavit requesting a search warrant for the raids, Customs Agent David Kane testified that Majid’s mosque was being used to launder hundreds of thousands of dollars for the targeted terror finance network that shared offices with ADAMS. An appendix to the Customs Service affidavit also names eleven ADAMS Center officials as targets of their terror finance investigation.And yet Majid and the ADAMS Center are still considered legitimate outreach partners by the FBI.
“This was just the most recent episode in the disastrous attempts at outreach to the Muslim community since the 9/11 attacks. And with the release in 2011 of President Obama’s strategic plan to combat “violent extremism” to expand outreach to these same terror-tied groups, the present administration seems intent on compounding the disaster wrought by previous administrations.”
If you are an American, there is nothing illegal about contributing money, as a donation to a charitable cause, to a project abroad.
But in the eyes of an American administration, funding educational, social welfare, recreational sports or other such projects in Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria is a pain, a political pain and not an illegal pain.
So what do they do?
Why the special scrutiny for pro-Israel groups? A New York Times article in July 2010 provided a clue: Tax-exempt groups were donating to West Bank settlers, and State Department officials wanted the settlers out. “As the American government seeks to end the four-decade Jewish settlement enterprise and foster a Palestinian state in the West Bank,” the Times wrote, “the American Treasury helps sustain the settlements through tax breaks on donations to support them.”
Did the T-men take their political cues from such stories, or did Administration officials give them orders? Either explanation would be a violation of public trust.
This would also suggest a pattern: Washington officials sent a message for tougher scrutiny of certain 501(c) groups, and the IRS coincidentally adjusted its enforcement regime…There’s still much we don’t know about the scandal of politicized tax enforcement.
Will someone sue the government?
Did the IRS also target tax-exempt groups that opposed Administration policy priorities? The Wall Street Journal on Tuesday mentioned the case of Z Street, a Pennsylvania pro-Israel group whose president is none other than The Jewish Press’ Lori Lowenthal Marcus.
Z Street (you get the idea behind the name, right? Z for Zionist versus J Street for Jews who hate Zionism) filed for 501(c)(3) status in December 2009, as an educational group. According to Lori, their tax attorney called the IRS in July 2010 to find out why it was taking so long to receive the status, and the IRS auditor on the case, Diane Gentry, said the application was taking so long because auditors were supposed to give special scrutiny to groups “connected with Israel.”
Folks, this is nightmare territory, except, it turns out, all your nightmares have been real. The U.S. may declare its friendship to “the Jewish State” night and day, but when it comes down to the reality of tax exemptions, you’ll get a better treatment if you’re associated with Hamas than with right-wing issues in Israel.
Lori told the WSJ that Gentry, the auditor, explained that many applications related to Israel had to be sent to “a special unit in D.C. to determine whether the organization’s activities contradict the Administration’s public policies.”
This is Venezuelan style democracy, folks. And the fact that the IRS auditor was citing it mater-of-fact like, suggests it was actual policy, and, as such, a blatant violation of every known democratic principle.
Z Street filed suit in August 2010 in federal court in Pennsylvania on the grounds of “viewpoint discrimination,” and its case has since been moved to Washington, D.C.
The WSJ cites a New York Times article published July 2010, that stated: “Tax-exempt groups were donating to West Bank settlers, and State Department officials wanted the settlers out.”
“As the American government seeks to end the four-decade Jewish settlement enterprise and foster a Palestinian state in the West Bank,” the NYT wrote, “the American Treasury helps sustain the settlements through tax breaks on donations to support them.”
The hearing of the Z Street case is scheduled for July 2, in Washington DC. Bring your placards!
Below are two of Lori’s TV appearances, most recently with Newsmax’s Steve Malzberg, and a few days earlier with Fox News’ Greta Van Susteren.
I can’t think of too many things more disgustingly discriminatory than a government agency singling out a group for special scrutiny. The Internal Revenue Service has been found to be doing exactly that. Conservative political groups like the Tea Party that have applied for tax exempt status have had one stumbling block after another thrown at them while filing all the forms and dealing with all that red tape in trying to get that exemption.
Organizations with names like “Patriot” in them were flagged for extra review by by over-zealous agents. It remains to be seen how high up the flagpole of responsibility this goes. Lois Lerner, the IRS official who inadvertently exposed this activity pleaded the 5th amendment when she testified before congress yesterday.
This is one of those rare situations that unites people on both sides of the political aisle. Both conservatives and liberals in congress were outraged and both have condemned this practice at the IRS. The President was no less outraged and he too condemned it and promised to get to the bottom of it. One thing is certain. There is a lot we don’t yet know. But this is the stuff of totalitarianism… of the type found in the former Soviet Union. Truly scary stuff for the United States of America.
Which brings me to an article at YWN. It appears that Israeli government is doing the same thing. They are not targeting political opponents. They are instead targeting Haredi businesses and Yeshivos to see if they are complying with the law.
I have no problem with an over-all goal of making sure that businesses comply with the law. Assuming the laws are just and fair, they ought to be complied with. And there is nothing wrong with a government agency seeing to it that they are – as long as that kind of scrutiny is evenly applied to all businesses. But when a single group is targeted, it smacks of an agenda to harass that community. The title of the document leaked to the media makes it clear that only Haredim will be targeted. It is entitled:
“Directives- Initiated activity in the Haredi community – May 2013″
Can’t get much clearer than that.
I hope this is just an over-zealous Economic Affairs Ministry agent and not the over arching policy of the Ministry itself. If it is she ought to be fired immediately and replaced with someone who is not biased against Haredim… or anyone else. One thing is certain. Just like the U.S. is holding congressional hearings on this in order to get to the bottom of their scandal – so too must Israel have a thorough investigation of the matter so that Israel too can get to their scandal.
What kind of country is America going to be? What kind of country is Israel going to be? Will they be democratic and fair? Or will they become more like dictatorships that target people and groups they don’t like?
Visit Emes Ve-Emunah.
President Obama will be appointing senior White House budget officer Daniel Werfel (42) to be the acting commissioner of the IRS.
But the question our readers are asking us is, is Daniel Werfel a member of the Tribe? And is there another Jew in charge (after Jack Lew) of the U.S. finances?
Werfel certainly is a (German) Jewish sounding name.
The anti-Semites certainly think he’s Jewish.
But no one around here recalls going to his Bar Mitzvah or seeing him at any of the secret Elder meetings.
The door is still open on this one.
We’ll let you know as soon as we find out for sure.
In this world, nothing can be said to be certain except death and taxes.
We’ve heard this clever aphorism countless times, and nodded our heads in bleak recognition. And yet, have we ever really pondered the ghoulishness that equates taxes with mortality?
Anyone who has ever been audited by the IRS—Seraphic Secret has been twice audited, each time emerging battered but owing the government zero dollars—knows the helpless feeling of being forced to submit to an absolute power, where the normal rules of law and civil society are suspended by an all-powerful government with unlimited resources.
The IRS is a temporal tyranny. Death is the ultimate tyranny. One was created by man, the other by God.
Barack Hussein Obama and the Democrat party are now playing God, by joining death and taxes into one sinister package.
Obamacare is administered by the IRS.
The same lawless agency that has been targeting and oppressing citizens who disagree with the current administration’s policies, is the very agency now tasked with the health—which is to say every breath—of every American.
Indeed, the Obama administration is now setting in motion a system whereby a central government data base will connect Health and Human Services with the Internal Revenue Service, the Social Security Administration, Homeland Security, and who knows how many other government agencies.
This makes Big Brother look like a benevolent midget.
The dream of the left, articulated by Marx and Lenin, is to create a rigidly ordered society where messy individualism—AKA liberty—is suppressed in favor of a utopian common good. Of course, the common good, as defined by the ruling leftists, is forever being downgraded to new normals.
For Obama, this is the new normal of massive unemployment and unsustainable national debt. In a few years, the new normal will be further redefined and downgraded. Before you know it, you live in a society where the common good has been so degraded that the very act of remembering what life used to be like under the banner of liberty and free enterprise is but a distant memory, if not a subversive thought as defined by those supermen who regulate our intake of salt, the size of our soda cups, what light bulbs we can use, and how we flush our toilets.
Welcome to Obamaland, where death and taxes is no longer an ironic statement, but a grim reality.
Visit Sephardic Secret.
In a May 22 email to the many thousands on J Street’s virtual rolodex, the organization that calls itself “pro-Israel, pro-peace” revealed its true nature: it is focused solely and exclusively on the creation of a Palestinian State, and peace be damned.
It did this by exhorting its American followers to demand that the democratically elected Israeli leadership say out loud what J Street wants it to say.
J Street cued up from U.S. secretary of state John Kerry’s efforts to launch yet another initiative aimed at achieving peace between Israel and its Arab Palestinian neighbors.
But it then takes what it wants to be true, asserts it as if there is no other truth, and demands that Americans get aggressive with the Israeli government to make a public commitment to J Street’s view of reality, rather than what the Israeli government knows is reality.
Here’s the sleight of hand in J Street’s email:
The basis of any such effort, of course, has to be a two-state solution — an independent Palestine existing in peace and security alongside Israel. But is this the policy of the government of Israel?
Some members of Prime Minister Netanyahu’s governing coalition are openly stating not only that they do not personally believe in a two-state solution but that the two-state solution is not official government policy. They wrangled about it publicly in a parliamentary committee meeting this week.
Member of Knesset and former Speaker Reuven Rivlin (Likud) noted “substantial divides inside the government” on the question.
And MK Orit Struck (Jewish Home) came right out and said “two states for two peoples is not the government’s official position … it is perhaps Netanyahu’s position… but has not been accepted as the government’s position.”
J Street subtly takes what it says is a basis for a solution and converts it into the solution. In contrast, Israeli leadership is committed to having the goal of the peace process be peace. Such a position is apparently an affront to J Street’s worldview.
It is especially chutzpadik to demand that the Israeli government bend its knee to J Street and declare its support for the creation of a Palestinian state at this time of profound unrest in the Middle East.
This is a singularly dangerous time in Middle East history. The terrorist-driven Muslim Brotherhood and al Qaeda and its affiliates are on the ascent. The closest thing to a moderate Arab Palestinian leader is Mahmoud Abbas whose term as president expired almost 5 years ago. Abbas routinely and publicly lionizes current and ancient terrorists and frequently admits, although mostly in Arabic, that he is not committed to peace with Israel.
And Mahmoud Abbas is on record that not one Jew will be allowed to live and breathe in any Palestinian State. So what exactly is it that J Street is demanding?
J Street’s letter imperiously casts anyone who disagrees with its vision of a perfect Middle East – one with a Palestinian State (whether or not there is peace) – as a roadblock to peace. The hubris is dazzling.
For there to be any hope of progress, the Israeli government must state unequivocally that support for a two-state solution is a core principle of its foreign policy – as it has been under every Prime Minister since Yitzhak Rabin.
A simple declarative statement by Netanyahu or by Israel’s US ambassador Michael Oren would dispel these doubts immediately. They need to speak out now.
Adding still more urgency to its demand, J Street includes a quote from MK Ronen Hoffman, “how is it possible to expect the Palestinians to enter negotiations when part of our government opposes a Palestinian state?”
And yet, no demand is made of any Arab Palestinian leader to commit to peace with Israel.
Why isn’t J Street’s question turned around? Shouldn’t supporters of Israel logically ask this question, instead: “How is it possible to expect the Israeli government to enter negotiations with Arab Palestinian leaders when there is overwhelming evidence that few if any of the leadership supports peace with the Jewish State of Israel?”
J Street ends its May 22 email pooh-poohing the idea that mere talks between the parties is useful. Again it asserts its own position as if it were ultimate truth: “But what’s needed isn’t talk, it’s a resolution of this conflict and that will only happen if both sides are clearly committed to reaching the same goal: a two-state solution.”