OIC Ramps Up Islamophobia Campaign

 

The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has long been on the forefront of the Islamist mission to establish the equivalent of Islamic blasphemy laws in the West.  Now, during its 12th Islamic Summit held in Cairo February 7-8, 2013, the OIC set forth new and creative ways to silence, and ultimately criminalize criticism of Islam.

The OIC is a 57-member state organization that claims to represent 1.5 billion Muslims around the globe.  As the second largest international organization in the world, behind only the UN, and as the largest Islamic organization in the world, it is obviously quite powerful.  Though it is arguably the largest voting block in the UN, most people have never heard of it.

One of the OIC’s primary aims for at least the last fourteen years has been the international criminalization of speech that is critical of any Islam-related topic, including Islamic terrorism, Islamic persecution of religious minorities and human rights violations committed in the name of Islam.

Since 1999, the OIC has set forth UN resolutions that would “combat defamation of religions.”  These resolutions condemned criticism of religion, but in the OIC’s interpretation, it applied only to Islam.  True statements of fact constituted no exception.

Support for the resolutions declined once the United States and other Western countries caught wind of the true meaning of “defamation of religions” and its inevitable chilling effect on freedom of expression.

In 2011, at the State Department’s request, the OIC drafted an alternative resolution that was intended to retain freedom of expression and still address the OIC’s concerns about alleged Islamophobia.  The result was Resolution 16/18 to Combat Intolerance Based on Religion or Belief.

The US State Department and numerous Christian organizations were elated, believing that the OIC had abandoned its mission to protect Islam from so-called “defamation,” and instead replaced it with the goal of protecting persecuted religious minorities from discrimination and violence.  In other words, many assumed a paradigm shift away from providing legal protections to a religion and toward legal protections for people.

But the OIC had some very creative interpretations of the language embodied in the new resolution.  By its manipulation of words such as intolerance and incitement, giving new meanings to what many thought was plain English, the OIC made it clear that it had not dropped its ultimate goal of protecting Islam from “defamation.”

Almost immediately upon its passage and the passage of a similar resolution in the General Assembly, the OIC set out on the unconventional task of “implementing” Resolution 16/18, contrary to the norm of leaving UN resolutions in the realm of the theoretical.

Unfortunately, the U.S. State Department acted as a willing accomplice in this effort, holding the second “Istanbul Conference” in December of 2011.  But, in its implementation phase, rather than moving toward the preservation of free expression, the OIC successfully moved the process in the opposite direction:  toward speech restrictive policies.

Though the U.S., thus far, has not pushed for the enactment of “hate speech” laws, it has “advocated for other measures to achieve the same result.”  Indeed, at this Administration’s behest, all national security training materials and policies “de-link” any interpretation of Islam from Islamic terrorism.  Many U.S. government agencies have now made it verboten to mention Islamic terrorism or assert anything negative about Islam.

The OIC’s task is easier in the EU countries, most of which already have some sort of hate speech restrictions.  They vary from country to country.  Some are cast as laws against the “denigration of religions”; some are “hate speech” laws; some are “public order” laws and some are “incitement to religious hatred” laws.  Additionally, the penalties can range from civil fines to jail time depending on the country.  The U.S. is the last hold out on retaining true freedom when it comes to matters of speech.

This past February, the OIC held an Islamic Summit, a high-level meeting held every three years.  It is the OIC’s largest meeting.  Heads of State and high ranking officials from member states attend.  The purpose of the meeting is to provide guidance pertinent to the realization of the objectives provided for in the OIC Charter and to consider other issues of importance to member states and the Islamic Ummah.  This year’s theme for the agenda was “The Muslim World:  New Challenges and Expanding Opportunities.”

Though the summit focused largely on Syria, Mali, and the “Palestinian issue,” the OIC also made it clear that it would ramp up its efforts to defeat “Islamophobia.”

The OIC is fastidiously working on the creation of legal instruments to address and combat “Islamophobia.”  Renewing its commitment to mobilize the West to comply with Islamic blasphemy laws, the OIC vowed to push for nation states to enact laws that will criminalize the “denigration of religions” during in its next Istanbul conference, anticipated to take place this June.

Further, it is requesting that the UN start an international mechanism that could serve as an “early warning system” against instances of discrimination and intolerance on religious grounds.  Specifically, the OIC is proposing the creation of an observatory at the Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights, presumably analogous to the Observatory on Islamophobia that the OIC already maintains.  The difference would be that the new observatory would be overseen by an internationally sanctioned entity (the UN) and would expand to all religions.

It is fair to say that since Islamist organizations have coordinated campaigns across the world that encourage and solicit reports of either real, feigned, staged or imagined incidents of “Islamophobia,” the new “empirical data” that such an observatory would collect, would still be drastically skewed.  No other religion has a worldwide campaign instructing its members to report unpleasant truths as “bigotry” or to complain about slights as minor as “hostile looks.”

Additionally, the OIC is continuing to use the language embodied in pre-existing legal instruments in order to make it harder for Western countries to object.  For example, Resolution 16/18 mirrors some of the language in the International Covenant of Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).  ICCPR, Article 20 states “the advocacy of religious hatred that constitutes incitement to discrimination, hostility or violence shall be prohibited by law.”  The U.S. rightly signed a reservation to this clause, effectively opting out, insisting that Americans retain the right to exercise their First Amendment freedom of speech.

Further, though Article 20 makes such speech illegal, it leaves the definition of these terms open to interpretation and does not specify that the illegality must be criminal in nature.  Despite this, Rizwan Saeed Sheikh, spokesman for the OIC Secretary General, insists that pursuant to Article 20 the “denigration of symbols or persons sacred to any religion is a criminal offense.”

Such claims are indicative of the legal and linguistic gymnastics that the OIC will use to achieve its goal to “combat defamation of Islam” and to export Islamic blasphemy laws, labeling them as something aesthetically easier to swallow.

At the Summit, OIC members also unanimously elected Iyad Madani to the post of OIC Secretary General.  His term is to commence in 2014 when current Secretary General Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu’s term expires.  This is the first time that the OIC will be headed by a Saudi.

Though the current OIC regime is comprised of sticklers for Islamic blasphemy laws and staunch advocates for the obliteration of Israel, it is likely that the OIC will become even more extreme under Madani.  Compared to the Wahabbis in Saudi Arabia, Ihsanoglu and gang can be considered reformers pushing “Islam lite.” The election of a former Saudi Minister to head the largest Islamic organization in the world and lead the UN’s most powerful voting bloc is a bad omen of what’s to come.  Indeed, it would come as no surprise if under its new leadership, the OIC’s old leadership would be labeled “Islamophobic.”

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Farrakhan Calls on Chicago Gangs to Protect Islamic State in America

If you were wondering how Chicago could get any worse, the guy whose Washington DC rally Obama helped organize, has an answer for you.

Farrakhan unveiled a plan to establish an independent Black Muslim country in America using “Muhammad’s Economic Blueprint: Ending Poverty and Want.” (That’s Elijah Muhammad who believed that white people were created by a mad scientist and that there were UFOs orbiting the earth, not the Muhammad who was a pedophile and mass murderer.)

Using the University of Illinois Chicago Pavilion as a forum, Farrakhan proclaimed that “By Allah’s grace, will give you a vision of what we as a people must do to solve our problems.”

Then Farrakhan went on about Jews running all the banks and Palestinian Arab Muslims sexually molesting young black girls. He praised China’s involvement in Africa and claimed that he was sent by Allah to end Western civilization.

Farrakhan denounced the Jews for not recognizing him as a messenger of Allah. “And—speaking now to the Jewish people—you accepted that agreement, according to the Qur’an. And what is that agreement? That when that one comes that is found written of in the Torah and the Gospel, that you would help him and in helping him you would be helping yourself. I represent that one—I am in his place, he is alive, well, and now in power.”

“My job is the same as the job of Prophet Muhammad ibn Abdullah!” Farrakhan proclaimed.

Then Farrakhan called for all African-Americans to contribute to a united treasury and create a separate nation that would be protected by Chicago gangs.

“You are the natural warriors to defend,” Farrakhan said at the University of Illinois Chicago Pavilion. “And the science of war must be taught to us, so that we will protect whatever God allows us to buy or to build.”

“We have to protect what is ours from any thief or robber,” the controversial leader said.

“America is for sale,” Farrakhan said. “But we are not owning it. We helped build this. Our sweat and blood was used to protect it. Shouldn’t we be co-owners of it? You’ve got to think like that now. I don’t want to walk streets that we don’t own.”

So… looks like Chicago’s problems are almost over.

Rahm Emanuel can just turn over the city to Farrakhan and Chicago gangs and walk away whistling while pretending not to notice while the whole place burns down. And then the UFOs will come down and open proper Islamic soap factories whose profits will go to Calypso Louie Farrakhan.By

Blog: Islamists’ Primary Target

Blog: Islamists’ Primary Target.

Two articles that appeared yesterday reveal an astonishing lack of historical perspective. Both of them were written by people for whom I have a great deal of respect, Jonathan Tobin and Andrew McCarthy.

Tobin and McCarthy point to the World Trade Center bombing in 1993 as “The Day the War on America Began”– to use the title of Tobin’s article. According to Tobin,

Exactly 20 years ago on this date, a terrorist attack at the World Trade Center took the lives of six people and injured more than a thousand others. The tragedy shocked the nation but, as with other al-Qaeda attacks in the years that followed, the WTC bombing did not alter the country’s basic approach to Islamist terrorism. For the next eight and a half years, the United States carried on with a business-as-usual attitude toward the subject. The lack of urgency applied to the subject, as well as the disorganized and sometimes slap-dash nature of the security establishment’s counter-terrorist operations, led to the far greater tragedy of September 11, 2001 when al-Qaeda managed to accomplish what it failed to do in 1993: knock down the towers and slaughter thousands.

McCarthy had this to say:

The World Trade Center bombing was Islamic supremacism’s declaration of war on the United States. It was a blunt statement by the savage shock troops of a worldwide movement that America – “the head of the snake,” as the Blind Sheikh called us – could be struck at home, right in the beating heart of economic liberty.

As you can see, both of the writers were inspired by the 20th anniversary of the WTC bombing. I don’t have a problem with that because it was a big deal, but if they want to pinpoint the date on which the war on America began, they need to look further back in time.

For instance, in 1972, Palestinians kidnapped and killed Israeli athletes during the Munich Olympics? What were they communicating to the world? That they hate Jewish people and Israel. In 1969, Palestinians were hijacking planes and blowing them up. What were they so upset about? Jewish people and Israel.

Due to their success in those and other atrocities and the fact that the murderers who concocted the schemes and those who carried them out became notorious celebrities who motivated anti-Semitic legions the world over to dig deep in their pockets, more recently Palestinians have broadened their appeal by focusing their hatred on Jewish people, Israel, and anyone who supports either of them.

Islamists saw the Palestinians’ success and decided to launch a similar campaign. That decision was made long before 1993. The major difference between Islamists and Palestinians is that Islamists include nations and individuals that insult Islam as their targets. They didn’t drop Jewish people, Israel, and those who support them from their most hated list. They simply added another group. For all practical purposes, today Islamists are at war with anyone on the planet who doesn’t buy their rambling rants hook, line, and sinker and with each other if their versions of Islam differ.

But their war on America goes back even further — to a least World War II. Islamists sided with Hitler during the war because he had a plan for dealing with Jewish people. There was no Israel at the time, so Israel wasn’t an issue. They were at war with Jewish people and those who supported them, including the Allied nations. For Islamists, the war never ended, and even today Arabs, particularly Islamist Arabs, say that it’s too bad Hitler didn’t finish the job he started.

This is not a minor semantic problem. It’s important because we now have president who is about as American as Satay, one of Indonesia’s most popular dishes, a secretary of defense who believes that Jews run the State Department, and a secretary of state who until just recently tried to assure the world that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is generous. To say that they have a warped perspective and no real understanding of history and America’s role in it is a gross understatement. We don’t need to contribute to their confusion and delusion.

But there’s more. Iran turned Islamist in 1979, and its current president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, has made it clear that Israel should be wiped off the map. Iran is also on the verge of having nuclear weapons and missiles with which to deliver them. Turkey turned Islamist in 2003, and its prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, has done everything that is humanly possible to isolate Israel. And since 2011, one Arab nation after another has been taken over by Islamists who take advantage of every opportunity to vilify Israel and Jewish people.

At the root, the war is not “on America.” The common denominator in everything is Jewish people and Israel. They are the primary targets. Secondarily, the war is on any nation and anyone that isn’t Islamist, and by that I mean to include Islamic countries that aren’t Islamist–i.e., Syria and Jordan, for example. It’s crucial that we know these things because we can’t win the war that they have declared on us if we don’t know what they are fighting for.

Neil Snyder is the Ralph A. Beeton Professor Emeritus at the University of Virginia. His blog, SnyderTalk.com, is posted daily.

Hezbollah’s Drugs and Blood Diamonds in Europe

Hezbollah trafficking in drugs and conflict diamonds should be reason enough for European Union sanctions.  Europe would only be strengthening its own position in Lebanon, not giving Hezbollah a reason to grab total power.   But if Hezbollah does make a move, it wouldn’t have been possible if the EU hadn’t been so permissive about their financing for so long.

Hezbollah goes far beyond Europe, and way beyond social welfare. The services they provide are funded by conflict diamonds and drug trafficking. Hezbollah offers armed protection of smuggled goods in hostile countries, plus facilitates hashish exports out of Lebanon for an elite club of Shiite clans entrenched in Lebanese organized crime.

Hezbollah works with the most powerful families in Southern Lebanon, with the resources and money to make Hezbollah’s operations possible.  Iranian and Syrian cash is only part of the budget; Hezbollah deals with enough money to operate independently.  The real center of influence is in the hashish of the Bekaa Valley and the blood diamonds of the Congo.

Shiite Lebanese abroad have deep involvement in the diamond industry. During the Sierra Leone civil war in 2002, Lebanese traders helped smuggle the countries blacklisted conflict diamonds out of the country. They opened operations in the Congo around 2005.  They’ve worked through the Tajideen business family in both countries for years.

The EU is weak when it comes to blocking conflict diamonds. Last week, the EU dropped sanctions against Zimbabwe’s diamond trade. Belgium is worried that its diamond sector in Antwerp is losing out to the competition – diamond districts emerging in India and China. All this despite the fact most of the revelations that Hezbollah has been muscling the Lebanese diaspora in West Africa into diamond smuggling were unearthed by Belgian intelligence more than 10 years ago, even making arrests in Antwerp.

"Blood Diamond" in 2006 raised awareness the issue of conflict diamonds out of Sierra Leone.  Hezbollah took part in the conflict diamond trade during the country's civil war.

“Blood Diamond” in 2006 raised awareness the issue. Hezbollah took part in conflict diamond trafficking out of Sierra Leone via Lebanese diamond merchants during the country’s civil war.

Even when those less-than-ethical diamond merchants don’t want to donate to Hezbollah operations, they face intimidation to do so.  According to former US Ambassador to Sierra Leone, Larry Andre:

“It’s not even an open secret; there is no secret. There’s a lot of social pressure and extortionate pressure brought to bear. ‘You had better support our cause, or we’ll visit your people back home’.”

Europe is also inundated by drugs shipped into Europe and the United States.  The organization has links to South American cartels, including the infamous Los Zetas gang in Mexico responsible for hundreds of murders in the last 10 years.  The US arrested courier Ayman Joumaa on account of his money laundering and cocaine trafficking, millions of dollars for the Lebanese group.  Just last year, the US confiscated $150 million from three Lebanese banks that were laundering on their behalf.

Since the French invasion of Mali, European newspapers have described al-Qaeda trafficking in drugs while avoiding the topic with Hezbollah.

Since the French invasion of Mali, European newspapers have described al-Qaeda trafficking in drugs while avoiding the topic with Hezbollah. (French troops in Mali, Photo credit: AP/R.Nicolas-Nelson ECPAD)

European funds are profits from of the drug trade bring South American cocaine and Afghan heroin that’s been smuggled into the European Union.  A major chunk from the narcotics directly traced back to hashish in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley.  Who’s growing the hashish?  Shiite clans whose revenues contribute to Hezbollah’s accounts: the al-Mikdad clan, the Jaafar clan, the Shammas and the Sharifs.  Family member Hassane Salim al-Mikdad was caught by the Free Syrian Army last summer fighting for Hezbollah.

And where is Europe right now? They are in West Africa fighting al-Qaeda in Mali, a group also tied in with drug trafficking and mineral smuggling. The group isn’t aligned with Hezbollah, but they are in the same businesses.  I can cite an avalanche of articles from Europe over the last month talking about the Islamist connection to hard drugs.  Everyone cares about demonizing al-Qaeda, which ain’t so hard to do.  Hezbollah is much more entrenched in the industry, so why so coy?

Hezbollah is running in the same trades that al-Qaeda is dabbling in.  Hezbollah is more entrenched, though.

Hezbollah is running in the same trades that al-Qaeda is dabbling in, but Hezbollah is more experienced and connected.

As much as the EU positions itself as a moral pillar in politics and with a flood of reports about al-Qaeda in Mali to the blood diamond trade, the continent won’t sanction Hezbollah for the same crimes.

Hezbollah will continue moving rough cut diamonds, trafficked from conflict zones, into Europe. They will continue to draw on their network of traders to invest in more weapons coming from Russia via Syria. The EU’s response? ‘We can’t block their finances, because that will destabilize Lebanon.’ Let’s think about this argument again and consider what the rational thing to do would be.by Gedalyah Reback

Al Qaeda calls to expel all Jews from “Palestine”

Al Qaeda calls to expel all Jews from “Palestine”.

Terrorism Without End

Terrorism Without End.

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The reason why the Israeli-Palestinian peace process is doomed can be summed up in a paragraph. The Arab populations left in political limbo when Israel recaptured in 1967 the territory that it had lost to Egypt and Jordan in 1948 exist only as a strategic weapon of disruption. They have been shaped into a population that is defined only by terrorism because that is the purpose that their sponsors put them to. There can be no constructive outcome of the conflict because you cannot negotiate with a weapon.

The trouble is not that Israel is unable to reach a settlement with the Palestinians; but that the Muslim countries funding and operating the terrorist groups that constitute the Palestinian political factions are unwilling to give up their weapon. Negotiating with the Palestinian Authority or Hamas is like trying to negotiate with a gun or bargain with an attack dog. There is nothing to be gained from such a futile task. The conflict will end only when those countries that are behind it will decide that it should end. And they have no reason to want it to end.
Palestinian terrorism is a strategic weapon of disruption that confines and unbalances Israel. At a cost of millions, the sponsors of that terror have inflicted billions in economic damage. And there is no reason for them to stop. Watching Israel and America try to reason with their attack dogs amuses them and allows them to expand their own influence by offering to act as mediators.

For that same reason, Islamic terrorism in general is also not going anywhere. What the Palestinians are to Israel, Muslim terrorists are to the West and the rest of the world. They are strategic weapons which are allowed to exist because they serve the purposes of their sponsors. Like most living weapons, they occasionally turn in the hands of their sponsors, but that only makes the task of directing them at the proper targets more urgent.

Terrorism can never be defeated by fighting terrorists. Combine massive wealth in some parts of the Middle East with staggering poverty in other parts and the supply of mercenaries is nearly endless. Syrian Jihadists are being paid $150 a month by Qatar; a good salary for an unskilled laborer in a region where life is cheap and every family has plenty of surplus sons and mouths to feed. A barrel of oil can buy the services of a killer for a month and Qatar pumps out millions of barrels a day.

Terrorism is cheap for the sponsors, profitable for the participants and hideously expensive for the targets. A soldier in a First World nation can cost six figures. For that same amount, a backward oil tyranny can field a hundred men. When those hundred men kill a soldier, then his nation will be heartbroken and question the costs of war. When those hundred men die, their mothers will ceremonially wail and cry out for more martyrs to avenge them. And the terror will go on.

Islam makes the process easier. Like Palestinian nationalism, it is a war machine whose ideas lubricate the recruitment, rampages and replenishment of fresh cannon fodder for the wars of the old rich men of the region.

That difference in attitude and ideology is at the heart of the power imbalance. As long as that imbalance exists, then a hundred poorly trained fighters who can hardly shoot without killing themselves will still edge the Army of One.

No Muslim country has been able to field an army that will match a Western nation in some time. The Israeli-Arab wars punishingly drove that lesson home as the tiny Jewish State managed to prevail even when it faced superior numbers and at times even superior technology and surprise attacks.

Palestinian nationalism was born out of the humiliating realization that no amount of firepower and manpower would suffice to sweep Israel off the map. It was an attempt at creating a secularized Islam with a mythical nationalism replacing a mythical religion. But at its moment of greatest success, it began to merge with Islam, like a river returning to the sea. Under Hamas, Palestinian nationalism is completing its merger with Islamism.

Terrorism in the Muslim world was reborn out of that same realization, its secular attachments diminishing as it falls back into the Islamic roots of its birth.  Arab Nationalism failed to produce a single army that could take on the West. Egypt’s armies were smashed by Israel. Iraq’s were torn apart by the United States. And so civilized mass warfare was instead replaced by a primitive calculated chaos.

Saddam’s Republican Guard could not even dream of defeating the United States, but years of terrorism could. Israel beat down entire armies, but blinked in the face of repeated terrorist attacks. An army is expensive, but a terrorist, even a suicide bomber, is cheap. War is expensive, but calculated chaos can be had at cut-rate prices.

Terrorism has no “off switch” because it’s too profitable. There is no down side for its sponsors who can inflict significant amounts of harm and collect enormous profits for a few million here and there. Their power to temporarily turn off the terror makes them even more powerful and influential.

Muslims have gone from nonentities in the Western political sphere to huge power players not through oil, but through the terror that they bought with that oil. Americans paid little attention to Muslims until September 11. Since then Muslims have been flattered and promoted, their political interests have been pandered to and their leaders have gained an enormous amount of influence. Not only has all this pandering failed to stop terrorism, it has instead provided a compelling motive for more terrorism.

Terrorism saw its field test in Israel where it successfully disrupted the national way of life. And then that weapon was deployed on a large scale in New York, Washington DC, London and Madrid.

In Israel, the terrorists became partners. Each act of strategic disruption further increased the scale of concessions in the hopes of getting them to accept that arrangement as the basis for a stable society. Now the United States has made Muslim sponsors of terrorism into its partners in the hopes of getting them to use their newfound power to build a stable international order. The predictable results of that disaster can be seen in the Arab Spring.

There is no way forward without accepting that Islamic terrorism is not a set of particular movements fighting over nationalist causes in Israel and India, over religious causes in Pakistan and Afghanistan, and over tribal causes in Nigeria and Somalia; it is a multi-headed hydra. Each head has its own identity, but it is the body that counts. That body lies under the surface in the form of ideological organizations such as the Muslim Brotherhood, but even deeper it lies in the flow of funds and influence from oil countries.

Until we accept that the terrorists matter less than their sponsors, we will be stuck fighting terrorism without end.