Wanabee Islamic State savages need only $25 to enter ISIS-controlled territory from Turkey, which U.S. intelligence director James Clapper said Thursday is not going to take an active role in the war against the ISIS.
He told the Senate Armed Services Committee that Ankara is more concerned with Kurdish opposition and its troubled economy.
The passage from Turkey to Syria is known as “jihad highway,” where $25 is enough for a lost soul to pay a smuggler to whisk him across to the dream of joining the ISIS and becoming a barbarian, if you are a man, or a slave to sex, if you are a woman.
“Public opinion polls show in Turkey they don’t see ISIL as a primary threat,” said Clapper, who referred to the ease of terrorists to travel in Turkey.
“And of course, the consequence of that is a permissive environment… because of their laws and the ability of people to travel through Turkey en route to Syria,” he explained. “So somewhere in the neighborhood of 60% of those foreign fighters find their way to Syria through Turkey.”
As usual, President Recep Erdoğan is missing the foreign policy boat. After he ditched Israel several yards ago and ran into the waiting arms of Bashar al-Assad and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, he had a hard time escaping their deadly clutches when he woke up.
If the U.S.-led strike force does not eliminate the ISIS first, Erdoğan may come out of his stupor when is finds himself dressed in an orange jumpsuit.
Erdoğan is led by his ego and not common sense, and Turkish smugglers are led by money and not by morality.
The WorldPost described a 30-year-old Turkish smuggler, Jasim Qalthim, as a “devoted father” who smuggles people into ISIS territory. He explained that an ISIS official, a former Turk named “Abu Ali,” controls the border.
“All the soldiers are afraid of him. One time, he closed the border for 10 days, just because he was angry. He controls everything. He makes huge money and buys weapons and ammunition for ISIS,” Qalthim said.
So why does he continue to smuggle people?
He listed three reasons: He needs the money to fed his family, it’s easy work, and he doesn’t have to travel far from home.
On Tuesday, Feb. 23, Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations Ron Prosor addressed the U.N. Security Council, which was meeting to congratulate itself and “reaffirm” its international commitment to the principles outlined in the UN Charter.
Prosor could not permit the occasion to pass without drawing attention to the ways in which the institution falls far short of the grand ideals which, 70 years ago, drove representatives of 50 nations to draw up the Charter upon which the U.N. was created.
The U.N. Charter enshrined several fundamental principles:
first, to maintain international peace and security and take effective measures for the prevention and removal of threats to peace; second, to advance relations among nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights; third, to promote and encourage respect for human rights; and fourth, to be a center for harmonizing the actions of nations. Prosor deftly excised the verbiage to reveal the myriad ways in which the U.N. undermines those lofty ideals, replacing them, instead, with cowardice and appeasement towards those who most betray the U.N. principles, and discrimination and vilification of at least one nation committed to upholding those principles: Israel.
The Israeli ambassador explained that the greatest threat to global security comes from the terrorist radical Islamist groups such as Hamas, Hezbollah, Al-Qaeda, ISIS and Boko Haram. He described their battle against the civilized world as one “between civility and barbarism, between pluralistic and totalitarian society, between tyranny and freedom.”
Those extremists are destabilizing communities, nations and entire regions of the world, yet the U.N. has “been reluctant to take decisive action,” Prosor said, and on occasion, the U.N. has “surrendered to those nations that harbor, fund and support terrorist groups.”
Hezbollah, in particular, was held out by Prosor as an example of the U.N.’s inclination to coddle, not curb, terrorism, pointing out that the Iranian-sponsored terrorist group has held Lebanon hostage for nearly three decades, while it continues its “reign of terror.”
The U.N. has also failed in its stated dedication to the principle of equal rights, with member nations that impose the death penalty for loving the “wrong” people or believing in the “wrong” faiths. Prosor pointed to the recent beheadings by ISIS of 21 Coptic Christians as merely the latest in a decades-long process of badgering and discriminating against Middle Eastern Christians, until their number has dwindled to small minorities.
Prosor also pointed an accusatory finger at various member nations who sit on the U.N.’s Human Rights Council, such as Venezuela, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Algeria. The lack of a free judiciary and a free press in those countries makes their membership a mockery of the Council.
Last year Iran was elected to serve as Vice Chair of the U.N.’s legal committee. Prosor pointed out the absurdity of making such a choice when Iranian citizens are denied due process and fair trials, and they are not even permitted to participate in Iranian national affairs.
Prosor told the Council:
The fact of the matter is that this institution has been hijacked. The ruthless autocracies that jail journalists rush to lecture us on the virtues of a free press. The repressive dictatorships that persecute political opponents filibuster on the sanctity of free and fair elections. And the mass-murdering tyrannical regimes preach to us about human rights.
Finally the Israeli ambassador addressed the treatment of the tiny country he represents at the hands of the U.N. Prosor patiently recounted just some of the ways in which Israel has been treated as a pariah nation by the U.N.
For example, last year alone the General Assembly adopted 20 resolutions singling out Israel for condemnation. All other nations were reprimanded by punitive resolutions a total of three times. In 2014, the Syrian civil war raged with chemical weapons and barrel bombs directed at its own citizens, Boko Haram slaughtered thousands, Russia invaded Crimea, North Korea continued its totalitarian regime oppressing its citizens, and Saudi Arabia executed dozens of its citizens, yet Israel was singled out for criticism time and again.
Since 2006, more than half of all resolutions adopted by the U.N. Human Rights Council in criticism of a particular country have been directed at Israel. This isn’t logical, it isn’t moral – it is simply prejudice.
media credit: Israel Mission to the UN, New York
Prosor then took the occasion to link the proceedings in the U.N. with last night’s Academy Awards. He suggested what would happen if the U.N. decided to give out Oscars for “Maintenance of International Peace and Security.”
Media Credit: Israel Mission to the UN, New York
The U.N. would give the Best Actor award “for acting like a peace loving country while developing nuclear capabilities, denying the Holocaust, and threatening the destruction of another member state to…..Iran.”
Prosor suggested the U.N. would give the Best Supporting Actor award to Hezbollah for its “unrelenting support to the Assad Regime in killing hundreds of thousands of civilians.”
The Israeli ambassador had several other predictions for winners in the U.N.’s version of the Academy awards. To watch him deliver them, watch the video of his speech, below.
A girl estimated to be around 10 years old blew herself up, killed four people and wounded 46 others in a suicide attack in Nigeria, the Associated Press reported.
The Nigerian Boko Haram terrorist group is suspected of being behind the attack. Authorities so far have not been able to identify the girl, who was blown up to pieces, but her suicide might be only a preview of more atrocities from the Islamic State (ISIS), Boko Harem and other radical Islamic terrorists who kidnap girls.
Their victims usually are older than the young girl in Sunday’s attack.
Boko Haram is the same group of barbarians who kidnapped 276 schoolgirls, most of them Christians, last April. All but a few remain missing, and Boko Haram has claimed they converted to Islam and were given as wives to terrorists.
The terrorist army has been fighting five years to make Nigeria, whose population is divided between Muslims and Christians, into an Islamic state.
French border authorities seized the passports of six would-be jihadi fighters – and their identity cards – as they attempted to travel to Syria on Monday.
Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve told reporters at a briefing that intelligence personnel believed the men were heading for Raqqa to join Daesh, the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria terrorist organization.
The passports are to be held for six months, after which the order can be renewed, authorities said. The men have the right to appeal the confiscation in a court of law.
Seizing passports of travelers heading to terrorist combat zones is one of the measures that was implemented last November in France as part of its new counter-terrorism initiative.
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has called for a pan-Arab military force to fight the Islamic State (ISIS).
Speaking a week after Egypt bombed ISIS positions in Libya in retaliation for the terrorist army’s execution of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians, al-Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said he believes in “coordination with our Arab brothers.”
Judging by the Egyptian military’s far from superior past, it is no wonder the former general wants allies.
Historically, Egypt has had a dismal record in hostage situations. Unfortunately, the February crisis has been the norm, rather than the exception. Failures in negotiating the safe release of hostages have started from the 1970s, with its bloodiest result in 1985,” Dr. Omar Ashour, a senior lecturer in security studies at the University of Exeter wrote for Al Jazeera.
The attack on Libya last week boosted Al-Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi’s popularity but also raises questions why he did not act sooner, before the hostages were beheaded.
The aerial strikes also served to bury to put on the back burner, temporarily, at home, where he has been harshly criticized for detaining thousands of people for alleged terrorism during the crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood.
Al-Sisi admitted in his televised speech on Sunday, “I am sure there are many innocent people inside prisons. Soon many of them will be released according to the available permissions.”
Turkish military forces launched a cross-border raid into northern Syria reportedly to evacuate personnel guarding a centuries-old Ottoman tomb across the border near the Kurdish town of Kobani late Saturday.
The operation was carried out overnight by ground troops backed by warplanes, according to the Turkish state-run TNT television station.
One soldier was killed while evacuating personnel protecting the Tomb of Suleyman Shah and artifacts in the mausoleum, according to the Hurriyet Daily News. Suleyman Shah, who died in 1236 CE, at a spot along the Euphrates, was the grandfather of Osman I, the founder of the massive Ottoman Empire.
A joint operation by Turkish intelligence and military personnel, the evacuation was carried out after reports suggested the tomb was besieged by members of Daesh, the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria terror organization.
There were no clashes with enemy combatants, according to Hurriyet, which reported that Turkish troops left Syria after detonating the symbolic building to prevent Daesh terrorists from using it as a base.
The artifacts from the tomb were “temporarily” brought to Turkey and the army “took control of an area in the Ashma region of Syria, raising our flag, where Suleiman Shah will later be transferred,” according to Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu.
“I want to stress that a nation can build a future only by laying a claim to its past,” the Turkish prime minister added.
Seventy-seven percent of Americans view the development of nuclear weapons by Iran as a critical threat to the United States, according to a new Gallup poll.
An even larger number, 84 percent, responded that the Islamic State and international terrorism are critical threats.
And what about the Israeli-Palestinian Authority conflict?
It is down in sixth place, after military power of North Korea and Russia, with 49 percent viewing it a critical threat and 41 percent seeing it is an “important” threat. Next in line are the conflict between Russia and Ukraine and the economic power of China.
ISIS and international terrorism loom largest in Americans’ minds as critical threats to U.S. interests. In a winter that has seen acts of unspeakable terrorism, with Obama seeking authorization for military action against the Islamic State, Americans are clearly concerned about Islamic militants and terrorists.
The conflict in Ukraine may not worry Americans as much because they see it as more of a threat to Europe than to the U.S.
And that helps explain why President Barack Obama does not want Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu talking to Congress about the Iranian nuclear threat, even if there were not elections in Israel.
He would rather distract Americans and talk about the peace process, but no one really cares.