Thursday, March 30, 2023

Muslim antisemitism again

There are brisk sales for "Mein Kampf" in Muslim countries

Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim-majority nation, has been stripped of the right to host its first major football event amid opposition to the participation of Israel.

The football-mad nation was scheduled to stage the men’s Under-20 FIFA World Cup from May 20 to June 11 and hoped the 24-team tournament would begin to repair its battered reputation after last year’s stadium tragedy in East Java.

Controversy over the qualification of Israel, however, has resulted in the event being removed from the South-East Asia’s largest nation by the game’s world governing body FIFA, which indicated it may also consider sanctions against the Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI).

“FIFA has decided, due to the current circumstances, to remove Indonesia as the host of the FIFA U-20 World Cup 2023,” FIFA said in a statement.

“A new host will be announced as soon as possible, with the dates of the tournament currently remaining unchanged. Potential sanctions against the PSSI may also be decided at a later stage.”

Indonesia was awarded the hosting rights in 2019 well before it was known which national teams would make it through the qualifying stages.

But the eventual presence in the draw of Israel – with which it has no formal diplomatic ties – threw a spanner in the works for a government that supports the cause of the Palestinians.

The issue escalated last week when conservative Muslims took to the streets of Jakarta to protest Israel’s involvement.

Bali Governor Wayan Koster then said he would refuse to host the Israeli team on the Hindu-majority island, as the organisers had planned. Koster cited Indonesia’s foreign policy amid the concerns raised about the event’s security.

The debate was ratcheted up further as Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo, the frontrunner for next year’s presidential election, also called for the Israeli team to be excluded from the tournament.

Indonesian President Joko Widodo attempted to salvage the cup, urging that sport and politics should not be mixed. Erick Thohir, one of his ministers and the new head of the PSSI, was dispatched to Doha to meet FIFA president Gianni Infantino.

FIFA, however, decided the domestic furore over Israel had made a tournament in Indonesia untenable. Argentina has been suggested in Indonesian media as a possible alternative host.


Rand Paul Makes Chilling But True Point on Crime in "Third World" D.C.

Crime is rampant in Washington, D.C., to the point where congressional staffers are being attacked in broad daylight. As Matt covered, a staffer for Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), who himself has been the victim of violent assaults, was stabbed. He survived but was taken to the hospital in "a life-threatening condition," though is expected to make a full recovery. The office is asking "for privacy so everyone can focus on healing and recovery," but Paul has still made brief remarks, and they're quite telling when it comes to warning about what our nation's capital has become.

"It makes me think we're in the third world," he said, adding "I wonder whether Washington, DC should be listed on dangerous places to travel," mentioning such is the case when it comes to certain foreign countries designated by the State Department as dangerous places to travel to.

Paul's tweet highlighted the dangers of America's cities, as he also lamented "Many of our major cities are really gone." The senator was not only attacked at his home in Kentucky in 2017, but was harassed by crowds, along with his wife, Kelley Paul, upon leaving the 2020 Republican National Convention in August of that year. He also addressed the dangers of recidivism, as the suspect in this violent stabbing, Glynn Neal, had just been released from prison on Friday, with the stabbing occurring on Saturday.

Not only is crime rampant in D.C., but the city council somehow thought it made sense to put forth a soft-on-crime policy that would eliminate most mandatory minimum sentences, allows for jury trials in almost all misdemeanors, and has lesser penalties for burglary, robbery, carjacking, sexual assault, and illegally carrying a gun.

While Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) vetoed that crime bill, the council overrode her with a vote of 12-1 in January. Thankfully, since Congress has jurisdiction over D.C., there were still options. Republicans and Democrats came together to nix it, after the White House alerted that the president wouldn't veto it if it came before him, which it did, becoming law earlier this month.

Not only did the council put forth such a crime bill, they then tried to get away with pulling it back. Congress still overturned it earlier this month though, with a vote of 250-173 in the House and 81-14 in the Senate. While before the House Oversight Committee for a Wednesday hearing, Chairman of the Council of the District of Columbia Phil Mendelson claimed he wasn't looking to cover up anything.

Even the mainstream media is concerned with crime in D.C., as Spencer highlighted earlier on Wednesday, pointing to a piece from The Washington Post that noted how "startling" it is that more crimes aren't prosecuted in the district.

While many of them voted to overturn the soft-on-crime bill, we can't expect too much from Democrats. Many of them still want to grant D.C. statehood, which is absurd on constitutional grounds—though that hasn't stopped them from trying when they controlled the House—but even more so in the light of crime that is out of control


Proposed S.686 law could be used to censor any website in America, foreign or domestic, not just TikTok

S.686, the Restricting the Emergence of Security Threats that Risk Information and Communications Technology Act or the appropriately titled “RESTRICT Act” could be used to censor any website in America, not just TikTok.

The legislation would authorize the Secretary of Commerce to “identify, deter, disrupt, prevent, prohibit, investigate, or otherwise mitigate, including by negotiating, entering into, or imposing, and enforcing any mitigation measure to address any risk arising from any covered transaction by any person, or with respect to any property, subject to the jurisdiction of the United States that the Secretary determines… poses an undue or unacceptable risk to the national security of the United States…”

Read that again. It says “by any person, or with respect to any property, subject to the jurisdiction of the United States…” That could be anything.

Or any website that is determined to be “interfering in, or altering the result or reported result of a Federal election, as determined in coordination with the Attorney General, the Director of National Intelligence, the Secretary of Treasury, and the Federal Election Commission…”

Meaning, it would potentially become illegal to question the “reported result” of any federal election, since questioning the results could potentially “interfere” with public acceptance of the result. How else does one “interfere” with the “reported result” of a federal election?

Or any website that opposes a war with a foreign adversary by “steer[ing] policy and regulatory decisions in favor of the strategic objectives of a foreign adversary to the detriment of the national security of the United States…” since merely advocating against the war would “favor” the foreign adversary’s objectives.

By definition, this would prohibit anti-war activities on the internet


Tory right wing ‘very optimistic’ Home Secretary will toughen asylum bill to block European judges

Right-wing Tory MPs are increasingly confident home secretary Suella Braverman will further toughen controversial legislation aimed at cracking down on migrants arriving in small boats.

The home secretary is considering changes to head off a rebellion by up to 60 Tory MPs on the right who want to stop British judges from following decisions made by the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) on deportations.

One senior Tory MP involved in the amendments told The Independent that the group was encouraged by talks with ministers that the bill could soon be tightened to allow British judges to ignore the Strasbourg court’s injunctions.

“We’re working closely together on reaching a position,” they said. “I’m very optimistic. We want the bill galvanised against challenge [by the ECHR]. There is room for compromise here.”

The MP added: “We could have pushed to end all involvement with the European courts and leave the convention. But that’s not a battle anyone wants at the moment.”

Tory MP Martin Vickers, who has backed the amendments, told The Independent: “We’ve got to have much more rigorous control over our immigration. So we’re trying to limit the power [of] European court judges intervening on these matters.”

Sir Bill Cash told the Commons on Monday that he expected ministers to consider a series of amendments so that judges “cannot prevent removal”, adding: “We do not want or need lawyers and judges to invent new blocks on removal with judicial activism.”

Rebel Tory MP Danny Kruger – another leading figure behind the amendments – told BBC Radio 4’s Today earlier that talks with ministers were ongoing. He later told the Commons he hoped there would be no more “pyjama injunctions in the middle of the night” from Strasbourg judges opposing orders.

Senior government figures reportedly believe the home secretary supports the rebel push to stop British judges using legal precedent from Strasbourg when considering deportation cases.

“She wants to use it to spook us to offer concessions to get them to drop their amendments because a big rebellion would be embarrassing,” one told The Times. “She has basically become a sock puppet for the right.”

But a source close to Ms Braverman said the claim was “totally untrue”, adding: “The people spreading scurrilous rumours like this about the home secretary should reconsider and refrain.”

In 2022, the ECHR granted an injunction – via its rule 39 – that effectively grounded a flight sending asylum seekers from the UK to Rwanda. Ms Braverman said on her recent trip to Rwanda that she was “encouraged” by “constructive” talks with Strasbourg.

The government has requested a higher threshold for any rule 39 injunction on attempted deportation flights. But Ms Braverman is thought to be considering inserting a new clause into the bill banning rule 39 orders from applying in the UK if exemptions can’t be negotiated with the Strasbourg court.

However, Tory moderates and legal experts fear the Strasbourg court cannot be defied without breaching the UK’s obligation to uphold the ECHR.

Senior Tory MP Tobias Ellwood told The Independent that Ms Braverman should ignore the push from the right. “There is simply no way this bill will secure parliamentary support unless it’s fully compliant with international laws, including our commitments to the ECHR.”

Asked about speaking to Tory MPs seeking to toughen the bill, Mr Sunak’s official spokesperson said: “We will keep seeking to speak constructively with MPs ... We do want MPs to be involved in the process of creating legislation.”

Others on the liberal wing want to see Rishi Sunak and Ms Braverman commit to establishing new, authorised safe routes via which asylum seekers can come to Britain.




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