Monday, January 16, 2017
A Hate to Kill and Die for
Muslim attacks on Christian churches are on the rise all around the world-including in America. The worst occurred last month when a bomb exploded in Egypt's St. Peter's Cathedral, killing 28, mostly women and children. Preliminary investigations had indicated that a woman entered the church, sat in the women's section, and then left an unattended purse that later detonated. Later reports asserted that, although others were involved, including one Muslim woman, a male suicide-bomber was the chief culprit (graphic pictures of his remains here).
How much hate must a woman have to enter a church, smile in the faces of Christians, pretend to be worshipping alongside them-here's a similar example from Turkey-and then knowingly leave a bomb precisely where it would kill mostly women and children? How much hate must a man have for people who are peacefully praying that, in order to kill as many of them, he is willing to kill himself?
The answer is an unfathomable-and, to Western and Christian minds, unbelievable-amount of hate. Yet the wonder isn't that the church was bombed but rather that many are surprised by it. After all, many Muslim scriptures, clerics, mosques, schools, satellite stations and Internet sites-even the ministry of education-openly incite hatred for Egypt's indigenous (but "infidel") inhabitants: the Christian Copts. Among other forms of animosity, they teach that Muslims must hate-and show that they hate-Christians, even if they are their own wives.
Worse, they teach that the most abominable crimes in God's sight-"worse than murder and bloodshed"-take place inside churches: there, Christians flaunt their rejection of Islam's core doctrine of tawhid ("monotheism") by ascribing partners to God (shirk) via their worship of the Trinity. This is why some of Islam's most revered ulema (scholars) describe churches as "worse than bars and brothels" and "dens of iniquity" which "breed corruption throughout the lands" (see Crucified Again, pgs. 32-36).
Modern Egyptian clerics constantly echo these hateful slanders. In August 2009, Al Azhar's Dar al-Ifta issued a fatwa likening the building of a church to "a nightclub, a gambling casino, or building a barn for rearing pigs, cats or dogs." In July 2012, Dr. Yassir al-Burhami, Egypt's leading Salafi, issued a fatwa forbidding Muslim taxi and bus drivers from transporting Christian clergy to their churches, an act "more forbidden than taking someone to a liquor bar." When the Islamic State launched a suicide attack on a packed church in Baghdad in 2011-killing about 60 Christians (graphic images of aftermath here)-it justified the massacre by portraying the church as a "dirty den of idolatry."
But it's not just ISIS and "radical" clerics that harbor such animosity for churches. After the fatal bombing inside St. Peter's, "everyday" Muslims wrote things like "God bless the person who did this blessed act" on social media. One average looking Muslim woman appears in the streets of Egypt jubilantly celebrating the massacre (video with English subtitles). She triumphantly yells "Allahu Akbar!" and says that "our beloved prophet Muhammad is paying you infidels [Christians] back... for rejecting tawhid, which must be proclaimed in every corner of Egypt!"
Americans may remember that Muslims around the world also celebrated the terror strikes of September 11. Then, the assumption was "we must've done something to make Muslims hate us so much." But if powerful America is capable of provoking Muslims with its foreign policies, what did Egypt's already downtrodden and ostracized Christian minority do to make Muslims celebrate the news that a church was bombed and Christians blown to pieces?
In other words, the hate is everywhere and on open display for those with eyes and ears to see and hear with. It's a regular feature of the West nowadays for Muslims to go on church vandalizing sprees (here's a video of one from Rome). Indeed, the ongoing desecration of churches, crucifixes, and Christian icons at the hands of Muslims is so virulent that-from the earliest writings of Islam (see Athanasius of Sinai's 7th century chronicles) till today-it continues to be described as the "work of Satan's offspring."
In Egypt the hate is usually simmering below the line of what is deemed newsworthy and only reaches the West when Muslim piety boils over and leaves a trail of carnage in its wake. "Amateur" attacks on churches that fail to claim lives, or Muslims abusing, kidnapping, beating, raping-and sometimes even murdering-Christians, are habitual occurrences in Egypt and other Muslim majority nations that rarely get reported in the West. Yet the fact remains: the animus that regularly causes large Muslim mobs to attack and/or torch buildings on the mere rumor that they are being used as churches, causes more zealous Muslims to bomb churches.
These latter-the professional jihadis and "martyrs"-believe themselves to be the greatest allies of God. They cite the Islamic doctrine of al-wala' wa'l-bara' ("Loyalty an Enmity"), which is based on a number of Koran verses. It teaches that the best way for a Muslim to proclaim his loyalty to Islam (submission to Allah and adherence to Muhammad's teachings) is by showing and exercising hate for those who reject it.
‘If I Forget Thee, O Jerusalem, Let My Right Hand Forget Her Cunning’
Arab response to the decision by US Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL), Dean Heller (R-NV) and Ted Cruz (R-TX) to introduce The Jerusalem Embassy and Recognition Act, legislation to relocate the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, has been predictable.
Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas claimed the decision would put the Middle East peace process and the whole world into a “crisis.” His close advisor Mahmoud al-Habash called the move “a declaration of war on Muslims.” Ynet noted this description is significant because it echoed a similar sentiment expressed by former Jerusalem Mufti Achrama Sabri, whose extreme views generally do not reflect those of the Palestinian Authority.
Jordanian Information Minister Muhammad Momani said that the transfer would be a “gift to extremists” and would “inflame the Islamic and Arab streets.”
Hussein Ibish, a Senior Resident Scholar at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington, D.C., whom Daniel Pipes calls “anti-American, anti-Semitic, inaccurate and immoral,” went even further when he warned of a “spontaneous, or possibly even organized, [violent] uprising is extremely plausible—perhaps even inevitable, if not immediately.”
As if on cue, US Secretary of State John Kerry added his caveat, which could easily be interpreted as a justification for an aggressive Arab response: “You’d have an explosion, an absolute explosion in the region, not just in the West Bank and perhaps even in Israel itself, but throughout the region.”
Relocation of Embassy Unsettles Palestinian Arab Campaign to Deny Jewish Claim to Jerusalem
Relocating the US embassy to Jerusalem poses a more serious problem for the Palestinian Arabs than disrupting a non-existent peace process. As part of a political strategy to delegitimize Israel, they initiated a campaign to obliterate 3,000 years of Jewish history in Israel and replace it with their own fabricated history, with the intention of creating the past history of a Palestinian Arab nation and state. The process involves appropriating Jewish traditions, tenets and historical narrative, allowing them to portray the Jews as interlopers, colonialists and usurpers of Arab lands.
The Palestinian Media Watch reported that this plot was first conveyed at a conference of Palestinian Arab historians in 1998. Dr. Yussuf Alzamili, Chairman of the History Department, Khan Yunis Educational College, urged all universities and colleges “to write the history of Palestine and to guard it, and not to enable the [foreign] implants and enemies to distort it or to legitimize the existence of Jews on this land... [History lecturer Abu Amar] clarified that there is no connection between the ancient generation of Jews and the new generation.”
To bolster Palestinian Arab claims, PA government media, flags, maps, cartoons, youth movement logos, schoolbooks and schools and children’s educational programs use maps removing Israel, signifying Palestinian Arab political sovereignty throughout all of Israel. The Holocaust and other areas of Jewish history are either denied, minimized or falsified. Christianity is also targeted. Jesus is falsely and improbably described as a Palestinian Arab who preached Islam (despite the centuries gap between the emergence of Christianity and the subsequent appearance of Mohammed), thereby not only repudiating Jewish history, but also the history and legitimacy of Christianity.
The PA accuses Israel of fashioning a false Jewish history in the land while appropriating Palestinian history, culture and heritage. The Palestinians refer to these actions as “Judaization.” The main target of this “Judaization” is the Al-Aqsa Mosque, which Israel allegedly schemes to demolish in order to build the Jewish Temple. At the same time, PA political and religious leaders, officials and academics refer to the Temple as Al-Haikal Al-Maz’oom, the “alleged Temple.”
Erasing any trace of archeological evidence of Jewish and Christian history is an essential part of this campaign, asserted columnist David M. Weinberg. Synagogues and Jewish holy sites in Jericho, Nablus and Gush Katif were burnt down as Palestinian Arab police watched. Palestinian Arab mobs in 1996 attacked Rachel’s Tomb in Bethlehem while Palestinian Arab policemen wounded the Israeli soldiers protecting the Tomb. Since then the Israelis were forced to enclose the site with concrete barriers, turning it into a veritable fortress. A Palestinian Arab horde led by Palestinian Arab policemen raided Joseph’s Tomb in Nablus, torched the inside of the synagogue and killed six of the Israeli soldiers guarding the site.
The Temple Mount had a section known as the Holy of Holies, where the Ark of the Covenant, containing the Ten Commandments and the Torah resided, explained Mark Ami-El, editor of The Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs Daily Alert. Jews were obligated to visit Jerusalem three times a year. After the Babylonians destroyed the First Temple in 586 BCE, Jews returned to Jerusalem from exile in 538 BCE and finished building the Second Temple in 515 BCE. Even after the Temple’s destruction by Roman armies in 70 CE, Jews directed their prayers to the Temple Mount.
To justify their claim that the Temple Mount is the site of a mosque dating back to the time of Adam and Eve, they are transforming the area into holy places, mosques and Muslim holy sites and removing everything to substantiate Israeli claims to the area. Thousands of tons of material have been dumped in the Kidron Valley and the city garbage dump at Eizariya, while they build underground mosques at the site.
Included in these ruins were the archeological remains—masonry stones, blocks, floor tiles and pottery—from the period of the First and Second Temples. Decorations and inscriptions on stones were removed, as were Hebrew lettering and five-pointed stars, a Hasmonean symbol found on handle seals from the second century BCE. The Wakf also destroyed stonework produced by Jewish artisans 2,000 years ago in the underground “double passageway.”
Similar to the well-reported Taliban and ISIS destruction of historical sites, less well known is that Christian relics on the Temple Mount were also demolished, including the Crusader pillars of the 13th-century Grammar Dome in the southwestern corner of the Mount, and the Crusader-era Chain Gate. Without any concern for the integrity of the these historic objects, the Waqf has permitted drilling holes in them, spray painting them and chopping through them for electricity cables, and allowed concrete and stone to be added to them.
Demolition of Artifacts: An Act of Resistance
Barnard College anthropologist Nadia Abu El Haj, representing the view of many Palestinian Arabs, defends destroying archaeological artifacts and sites: “Looting could well be analyzed as a form of resistance to the Israeli state and an archaeological project, understood by many Palestinians, to stand at the very heart of Zionist historical claims to the land.” She argues that Israeli archeologists use their craft to substantiate Jewish national homeland in a land where Jews never lived. In the process, the Israelis have “erased other geographies. Most centrally, it effaced Arab/Palestinian claims to and presences within the very same place.”
Responding to These Fabrications
The problem with these incessant barrage of lies is that they are repeated not just in the Palestinian Arab media, but in statements of human rights organizations, academic books and journals and at the UN.
Jewish religious, spiritual and historical attachment to Jerusalem and the land of Israel has never wavered, as Reuben Gafni, a legal expert on historical rights and one of the early members of the Mizrachi and Hapoel Hamizrachi Movement, stressed. The Jewish nation, he said, has never abandoned or surrendered its right to return to their ancestral home or claimed any other country or territory as their new homeland.
The need to explain the Jewish link to Jerusalem and the land of Israel is not new. In his testimony before the Anglo-American Committee of Inquiry on Palestine in 1946, David Ben-Gurion, Israel’s first prime minister, explained to the British and American committee members that more than 3,000 years before the Mayflower departed England for the New World, Jews fled from Egypt. And “every in the Jew in the world knows exactly when we left. It was the 15th of Nisan.”
Each spring, Jews commemorate their liberation from slavery and the Exodus from Egypt to the land of Israel at the Seder, which traditionally ends with the sentence: “Next year in the Jerusalem!” Some add the word rebuilt: “Next year in the rebuilt Jerusalem.”
Religious rituals were instituted to remember the destruction of the Temples in Jerusalem and the subsequent exile. During times of joy and sorrow, Zion is always part of a Jew’s thoughts and liturgy. At least three times a day, observant Jews pray for the redemption of Zion and Jerusalem and for her well-being. When comforting a Jew on the loss of a loved one, we say, “May God comfort you (amongst) the other mourners of Zion and Jerusalem.”
Throughout Jewish history, Jews have recited Psalm 137: “If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget her cunning. Let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth, if I do not remember you if I do not set Jerusalem above my highest Joys.” The verse is sung at the end of Jewish weddings.
The words of Jeremiah (33:10-11), form a prayer sung at weddings to ask God to rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem and restore joy and happiness to the streets of Jerusalem: “Yet again there shall be heard... in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem. The voice of joy and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride.”
Israel’s national anthem, written in 1886 by Naphtali Herz Imber, makes this eternal connection point quite clear: “As long as the Jewish spirit is yearning deep in the heart, With eyes turned toward the East, looking toward Zion, Then our hope—the two-thousand-year-old hope—will not be lost: To be a free people in our land, The land of Zion and Jerusalem.”
By moving the US embassy to Jerusalem, political scientist Miriam F. Elman suggests, “Sending a strong message that the new administration stands with the Israeli government on a major symbolic issue with high potential costs could push the Palestinian leadership to a greater sense of urgency in negotiations.” Moreover, given the failures of decades of diplomacy that deliberately fell sway to the same arguments being advanced today against moving the American Embassy to the capital of Israel, as the President-elect stated while campaigning for African-American votes, “What have you got to lose?”
UK: Rudd speech on foreign workers recorded as a hate incident
If a middle-of-the-road speech now counts as a ‘hate incident’, we’re all screwed
Amber Rudd’s notorious [Tory] party conference speech – in which she floated the idea of employers reporting on the number of foreign and British-born people they employ – has been recorded by the police as a ‘hate incident’, a new lesser category of hate crime that Rudd herself helped to introduce in July last year. In her desperation to prove she was taking post-Brexit hate crime seriously, she has effectively criminalised herself.
The complaint was made by Joshua Silver, a physics professor at Oxford, who told Andrew Neil in a laugh-a-minute Daily Politics interview that Rudd’s speech was ‘picking on foreigners’ – although he admitted to having only read a draft. Silver’s now getting a well-earned rinsing. But he’s not alone in seeing Rudd’s speech as criminal. At the time, some liberal commentators were literally comparing Rudd’s speech to Mein Kampf.
If you care about people’s freedom to move, strive and settle wherever they please, Rudd’s speech was nothing to celebrate. But it was painfully mainstream, even plagiaristic. As we pointed out on spiked at the time, she stole most of her ideas from Ed Miliband and Gordon Brown. When Brown called for ‘British jobs’ in 2007, was that a hate incident, too? Did commentators line up to present it as something straight out of Nuremberg? Of course they didn’t.
But far more worrying is the legal framework that allowed Silver’s complaint to go so far. Rudd’s speech will now be recorded in official statistics as a ‘non-crime hate incident’. A hate incident is defined as ‘any incident which the victim, or anyone else, thinks is based on someone’s prejudice towards them’ relating to protected characteristics, and must be recorded ‘regardless of whether or not they are the victim, and irrespective of whether there is any evidence to identify the hate element’.
Hate crime has always been an Orwellian idea. If someone attacks someone, they shouldn’t be criminalised for what they were thinking while they were doing it. It pushes us into the realm of thoughtcrime. But what this case shows is that hate crime has become even more insidious, it has lapsed into policing mere speech, or in this case a speech, that isn’t criminal in any real way – even under existing hate-speech law. Though they may never make it to court, any allegation – no matter how specious or ridiculous – must be recorded.
We already live under a tyranny of hate-speech and malicious-communications laws, through which people have been criminalised for wearing offensive t-shirts, getting their dogs to do Nazi salutes and preaching fire and brimstone from their own pulpits. The recording of so-called hate incidents will chill discussion further. It will make politicians watch their words and feed the particularly febrile climate that has been whipped up by reeling Remainers post-Brexit.
The much-quoted police statistics, denoting a ‘spike’ in hate crime after the vote, conflated both hate crime and hate incidents. This has been cynically exploited to explode the problem of racism, demonise Leave voters and delegitimise the vote. What could, for all we know, be largely uninvestigated ‘hate incidents’ – like that ‘committed’ by Rudd – are being used to imply that Brexit triggered a slew of racist attacks. It’s horrendous and divisive: migrant communities are being told on a daily basis that their white neighbours are out to get them.
But, again, you have to look at who’s really responsible. It wasn’t a cabal of Remainer Guardian journalists who laid down the groundwork for this panic, who over decades have sleepwalked into this Salem-like situation, where an allegation is enough and words are equated with actions – it’s our own government. It was people like Rudd, who are now themselves being bitten. There’s a kind of justice in that. But for those of us who believe in a free society, that’s not much comfort.
StemExpress Drops Its Lawsuit Over Undercover Fetal-Parts Video
A seller of organs from aborted babies withdraws its suit, knowing it would probably lose.
A prominent tissue-procurement organization (TPO) - StemExpress, LLC, which partnered with Planned Parenthood and other abortion clinics to profit illegally from the sale of fetal body parts from aborted babies - has dropped its lawsuit against the Center for Medical Progress (CMP).
The suit concerned a compromising video that CMP's founder David Daleiden had filmed undercover during a lunch meeting with StemExpress founder and CEO Cate Dyer. StemExpress first sued CMP in July 2015, before the release of the video, but its request for a preliminary injunction was denied the following month. At that point CMP released the video to the public as part of its undercover series on the fetal-tissue trafficking industry, and it quickly went viral.
In this particular video, Dyer spoke with CMP's undercover journalists (posing as representatives of a biotech firm) about StemExpress clients that would frequently request "another 50 livers a week," meaning fetal organs obtained from abortion clinics. She also referred to some abortion clinics as "volume institutions," with which her group partnered to obtain a greater number of fetal organs for resale to researchers. (Planned Parenthood was the most prominent abortion group that had a formal partnership with StemExpress.) Dyer also refers in the video to "intact cases" being shipped back to the lab in their entirety, meaning the full corpses of aborted babies.
Interestingly, StemExpress dropped its ongoing suit against CMP this afternoon, just one day before a scheduled appellate hearing on a motion to strike its complaint. After failing to obtain an injunction - on the grounds of Daleiden's First Amendment rights - StemExpress continued with its suit, claiming that Daleiden interfered with the TPO's business interests and allegedly broke the law by recording their conversation in a public restaurant.
Chuck LiMandri of the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund, one of the attorneys representing CMP in this case, tells National Review that StemExpress likely dropped its case for fear that it would lose and then owe Daleiden legal fees.
"We had stronger arguments on appeal," LiMandri says. "They were pretty candid that one of the primary purposes of the lawsuit was to block the release of the video, an attempt that failed."
The timing of this decision is intriguing, as it comes just one week after the House Select Panel on Infant Lives released its final report on a 16-month investigation into the fetal-tissue-trafficking industry, much of which sheds light on the despicable practices in which StemExpress was engaged, along with Planned Parenthood, other abortion clinics, and other TPOs.
Over the course of the investigation, the House panel made 15 criminal and regulatory referrals, several of which appeared to implicate StemExpress in illegal activity, including violations of federal health and privacy regulations and the destruction of pertinent documents. For example, the report shows that, in at least one case, StemExpress paid a Planned Parenthood affiliate $55 for a fetal brain that the TPO then sold to a customer for $3,340; such profit from fetal body parts is normally against both federal and state law. In addition, the StemExpress website featured a drop-down menu allowing researchers to select the fetal body parts they wished to purchase, all of which were sold at dramatically marked-up prices.
The House panel referred StemExpress to the Department of Health and Human Services and the Justice Department, as well as to state and local law-enforcement agencies, for further investigation into its practices.
According to Daleiden, this lawsuit and its dismissal are particularly important because StemExpress was the first of the CMP-investigated entities to file a lawsuit or seek an injunction. "It's sort of a miniature version of the other lawsuits brought against CMP, under this exaggerated, frivolous theory that undercover work is a somehow a form of fraud, or that being a citizen journalist is something you can sue over," Daleiden tells National Review.
StemExpress's latest move also might shed some light on the future of two other ongoing lawsuits against CMP, the first brought by the National Abortion Federation (NAF) and the second by the Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA). Both cases are being heard in federal court in San Francisco, before the same judge. The case brought by NAF, a trade group of North American abortion organizations, is especially important because it involves a preliminary injunction that is currently preventing CMP from releasing more damning footage. According to Daleiden, this footage comes from NAF conventions in 2014 and 2015, and if CMP wins the suit, it will be permitted to release that footage to the public.
Daleiden believes that StemExpress may have surrendered the lawsuit before its completion so that the outcome would not harm the cases of NAF and PPFA. "Their legal theory is totally discredited at this point, and they didn't want to go all the way through with the lawsuit because they knew they would fail," Daleiden says, referring to the claim that undercover investigation is somehow illegal.
The TPO's surrender in this lawsuit illustrates that there is more to the abortion industry than one might see on the surface, and should serve as a timely and unpleasant reminder that no amount of euphemism or obfuscation can hide the true nature of the dark and grisly business to which lawmakers will soon turn their attentions.
Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.
American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.
For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and DISSECTING LEFTISM. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here.